Monday, October 27, 2014

You're Invited!: SOWW Special Open House Nov. 11th

It has been truly a blessing to see the ongoing transformation at Bull Run Warrior Retreat. 
Though this event is not a ribbon cutting ceremony, it is indeed a big reveal! 
Please make time to come out and see the amazing progress made on the retreat house before it is completed for our ribbon cutting ceremony in 2015. 
Serve Our Willing Warriors will be raffling off goodies and many local dignitaries will be in attendance to support our cause.

We look forward to seeing you there!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Will to Ride - SOWW Inaugural Bike Ride

We were rockin' and a rollin' on wheels October 11th for the Serve Our Willing Warriors Inaugural Bike Ride. 
As rain poured down our faces and sweat dripped from the tips of our noses, 52 participants pushed through what seemed to be the storm of the century on this gloomy Saturday morning.

It was a mountainous uphill battle . . . Literally! 
And everyone together, citizens and warriors alike, pushed their limits cycling along the windy roads of the Bull Run Mountains.

Some of the riders stopping for a pose at a pit stop.
 The 11-Miler team looked strong as they stopped for bananas and refreshments at their halfway point!

One of the wounded warriors from Ride to Recovery representing well!
 Some SOWW riders that chose to rough it through the downpour.

Meanwhile the 53 miler team had no time for breaks. 
They probably didn't even know the definition of  the word "break".

Wounded warrior team holding strong! 
No matter the trifling tribulations we SOWWers faced that morning, it was comforting to know that there was a rescue team in place in case anything were to happen! 
Our dedicated Rescue Squad rescued bikers near and far on Saturday. 
If it was not for them, many of us would not have been able to continue.

The trusty rescue squad on the ready for the day's events
We were also grateful to have our covert "Snack Team" prepared with all types of nutritious foods to fuel us throughout the race! 

Our dedicated snack team united and standing by!

This adorable family (above) that was enjoying the opportunity to get together and celebrate life; even by riding in the rain. 
(I should also note that this family rode together and personally beat my own personal record . . .  Even though the father was biking with two of his baby girls on board!)

Two very spirited cyclers taking a break.
With that said, it wasn't until a conversation that I had with this amazing wounded warrior that I jokingly asked " So, you won the race today right?" as I was asking everyone who had crossed the finish line. He simply turned to me and said, "Oh, no ma'am. Today we all won."

It is moments like these that truly get the heart melting just a bit quicker. And just as the grinch experienced Christmas morning; I think my heart grew 2 sizes that day. And for all of us at Serve Our Willing Warriors, our hearts continue to grow and grow with each event and each conversation that we carry with these wonderful service members and their families.

SOWW Treasurer and daughter taking momentary cover from the weather.
Special thank you to Stacey Plaugher for putting this event together! 
We could not have done it without her. 
We look forward to many more bike rides to come!

Stacey preparing to speak to the group of bikers in attendance at the event.
Enjoy looking at some photos below of what the trail looked like the day of the race! 
It was truly a beautiful scenic route.

Thank you for reading!

Have you seen our last blog post about the SOWW Golf Tournament? To read more click here

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Willing Warriors take the Green

This past Monday October 6th Serve Our Willing Warriors' 2nd Annual Golf tournament brought together motivated golfers and socially responsible corporations to take a swing at bringing wounded warriors and their families to the Bull Run Warrior Retreat. While enjoying a day out on the green, golfers had the opportunity to network with other professionals and build camaraderie with 32 wounded warriors in attendance at the event.

One group of wounded warriors in attendance at the 2nd Annual SOWW Golf Tournament
With smiles on their faces, the wounded warriors and their loved ones arrived that morning ready to play and were simply happy to get outside of their medical environment. One family in particular shined in their enjoyment on the field and expressed their gratitude for allowing not only the warrior but his wife and child to be able to participate as a unit!

A wounded warrior alongside his wife and son on the 9th hole green 
This couple's son William had actually recently become famous in the local newspapers for having putted his ball perfectly off the green in a game of golf last month. Below is the shot that the front page under the Sports and Recreation Briefs featured with his beautiful smiling face!

Little William, age 3, in the newspaper prior to the SOWW Golf Tournament
Analyzing the green
Little William debating his next put
Nothing like the bonding of a father and son
It is smiles like these that keep Serve Our Willing Warriors fighting for these families and their quality time together. We would like to give a special thanks to SMGA and Ft. Belvoir for helping us organize the attendance of the wounded warriors' golf outing. We had some truly amazing soldiers with positive attitudes in attendance that made an ample effort to thank each and every person they saw sporting a SOWW shirt any chance they got. 


It is often said that "it's the simple things in life" that make it all worth while. Today, for the 32 wounded warriors and their families, it was the simple enjoyment of a day out on the green alongside their biggest supporters. Special thank you to Jeff Glenn for all of his hard work in putting together this event for us! Here is the star below with his SOWW team being recognized by the House of Delegates: 

Please enjoy our event photos below! 

FH. FURR provided a vehicle from combat recovery for all of our players to sign the day of the event
Wounded warriors of Ft. Belvoir up bright an early
The Moores ready to take on the green

These ladies are all smiles!

Never a boring moment with these guys

Lovely ladies of the green 
Wounded Warrior Don and his crew
Amazing view of the helicopter after the ball drop

Taking measurements to determine the winner of the $2,500
Event golfers discussing the top 3 closest balls 

Thank you for reading!