TAMPA, Fla., May 21, 2018 -- Mark Lalli's life spun out of control in November 2007. The Army veteran's helicopter malfunctioned in Northern Italy before crashing. He woke weeks later, 4,200 miles away in a hospital bed in Washington, DC.
"A gentleman came into my room with a backpack and a milkshake," Mark said. "He said, 'Hey I'm Jonathan. I work with Wounded Warrior Project.'"
Much like the six weeks in a coma, Mark doesn't remember the flavor of the milkshake, but he does recall how that meeting changed his life.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., May 18, 2018 -- Warriors and the most passionate supporters of Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) will be honored at the Courage Awards & Benefit Dinner® in New York City on May 31 at Gotham Hall. The Gabriel and Yaara Plotkin Family Foundation is this year's supporting sponsor, whose commitment, along with support from Goldman Sachs, Neuro Community Care, and the NFL Players Association are making the 2018 Courage Awards & Benefit Dinner possible.
"We're thankful for the generosity of this year's sponsors," said WWP CEO Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Mike Linnington. "The Courage Awards & Benefit Dinner is an important evening where we take the time to recognize the efforts of those who have gone above and beyond supporting the needs of our nation's wounded veterans. Without the generosity of Gabe and Yaara Plotkin, Goldman Sachs, Neuro Community Care, and the NFL Players Association, this evening would not be possible."
WASHINGTON, May 22, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is pleased and supportive of the president's nomination of Robert Wilkie to become the next Secretary of Veterans Affairs (VA). In his tenure as Acting Secretary, Wilkie has demonstrated tremendous ability to lead and focus on the issues of highest concern in the veteran community.
"Before the Senate even begins his confirmation process, Mr. Wilkie will have already placed VA on a path to modernizing its health records and helped bring Congress to the precipice of passing groundbreaking expansions to community care and caregiver assistance programs," said René Bardorf, WWP senior vice president of government and community relations. "We look forward to continuing to work alongside VA leadership to help deliver on our mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors, and we are confident Mr. Wilkie will continue to demonstrate the experience, skills, and passion to become the transformative leader our veterans deserve."
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., May 15, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is excited to announce the launch of its Carry Forward™ 5K series to engage supporters nationwide. Supporters in multiple cities can get involved, connect with local warriors, and raise support to help injured veterans become empowered, employed, and engaged in our communities. Carry Forward will challenge individuals and squads to test their strength and stamina with three levels of participation.
ATLANTA, May 15, 2018 -- Yoga instructors encouraged injured veterans and their family members to increase their metabolisms, gain strength, and increase flexibility through a Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) ladies-only yoga dance class.
Vinyasa yoga combines elements of power yoga, fitness, dance, and meditation. The class practiced long-held poses and deep breathing techniques while grooving to upbeat popular songs. This style of strength training yoga taught warriors liberating and exciting ways to use these techniques as part of their recoveries.
"I was always interested in taking yoga, but the idea of adding dance music seemed more exciting," said Army veteran Beverly Townes from Snellville, Georgia. "I thoroughly enjoyed the event even though some of the moves were a little challenging, but the staff provided alternate moves and positions for those of us who were unable to do the regular positions."
OAKDALE, Conn., May 9, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) invited injured veterans and their guests to explore more than 165 thrilling, hands-on exhibits at the Connecticut Science Center. The exhibits brought out the kid in everyone by encouraging them to build, design, learn, and race.
"As a mother of four small children, a caregiver to my husband who is a combat Army veteran, and being an Army veteran myself, I find peace and joy is spending time with our children," said Caleb Texidor. "I find education very important, above all. The event stood out to me because it gave our children the chance to learn, be active, and exercise their minds."
LAS VEGAS, May 7, 2018 -- Injured veterans experienced a sample of the intense workout athletes go through on the hit television show "American Ninja Warrior," during a Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connection event.
Professional coaches gave warriors empowering training tips and advice as they tackled challenging obstacles.
"I'm always seeking ways and opportunities to maintain and improve my physical fitness," said Air Force veteran Paul Schulz. "This was a great experience to improve on teamwork skills and build on relationships with other veterans. Also, I'm a big fan of 'American Ninja Warrior' and its unique challenges."
BOULDER CITY, Nev., May 2, 2018 -- After enjoying majestic views of the Mojave Desert from Bootleg Canyon, injured veterans launched themselves down the first of four zip line courses, covering 1.5 miles, during a recent Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connection event.
Veterans tapped into the healing powers of nature and physical activity while flying high above the desert, taking in views of Lake Mead, Eldorado Canyon, Red Rock Canyon, and the Las Vegas Strip.
"I signed up for this event to share an adventure with fellow veterans in the Las Vegas area," said Army veteran John Heintzelman. "We all love hanging with other veterans, being adventurous, or just relaxing. My favorite part of this awesome event was the camaraderie and the local desert scenery."
WASHINGTON, May 2, 2018 -- Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) Soldier Ride® recently returned to Washington, DC for its annual events at the White House and Annapolis. This multi-day adaptive cycling event gave more than 70 wounded warriors and their caregivers a chance to connect, while challenging themselves physically and mentally.
Last year, Army veteran Deven Schei had the special privilege of introducing the president to other attending warriors during the White House ceremony. This year, he was there as a rider, along with his brother and fellow Army veteran, Erik. They rode together through Annapolis, but not on separate bikes – they shared a specially adapted tandem bicycle that suits their needs.
"We started riding in 2011, and we try to do one 40- to 50-mile ride each year," Deven said. "It's something we can do together, just me and him."
NEW YORK, May 1, 2018 -- You ready to hit the road for a good cause? Good news – registration is open for the Soldier Ride® Community Rides with Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP). Soldier Ride is a multi-day cycling event that empowers injured veterans to push themselves physically and mentally. The rides aren't just exercise; they're a way to manage the visible and invisible wounds of war. And warriors don't ride alone – they move forward together, as a unit, just like during their military service.
And you can join them.
During Community Rides, you'll have more than the chance to pedal alongside our nation's wounded warriors; you'll be able to show support and raise critical funds for WWP's life-changing programs and services.