Selfless Veteran, a Medal of Honor Recipient, Given a Brand-New Truck for His Heroism

Selfless Veteran, a Medal of Honor Recipient, Given a Brand-New Truck for His Heroism

By DAVID WHITING / STAFF COLUMNIST OC REGISTER

It is a cool April day in the mountains above Julian, and Medal of Honor recipient John Baca climbs in his tiny, beat-up red truck, reaches over and opens the passenger door for me because, well, the handle is long gone.

We pull away from his small rustic cabin and rattle and bounce down a dirt road as Baca distributes mail to shut-ins, gives out apple pies and makes sure that folks without know that someone cares.

It’s a typical day for an extraordinary Vietnam veteran, a man who threw himself on a grenade in 1970 so that his Army buddies could live. Miraculously, Baca survived, and while still suffering from injuries, he pays it forward by giving away just about everything.

Heck, Baca even gave away his house in Huntington Beach. It was near the park named after him.

But in a unique moment last weekend before hundreds of fellow veterans, the Medal of Honor recipient finally allowed that sometimes accepting a gift means more than giving a gift.

Baca’s eyes grew wide when he saw his present. Civilians, as well as men who once faced battle as their brothers bled, brushed away tears.

And this man awarded the nation’s highest medal for valor in combat found some healing.

AN ANGEL FOR TROOPS

Buying a car is easy. Getting a vehicle for a man who gives away everything is tough.

Enter Annie Nelson. She graduated from Mission Viejo High School and Cal State Long Beach, then modeled and became a flight attendant.

Life was good – until she suffered a work-related back injury. Sidelined, she found her calling after 9/11: helping men and women in uniform.

She formed American Soldier Network, began writing letters to troops in Iraq and wound up pen pals with three Marines. Just before Christmas 2004, a suicide bomber hit a convoy. One pen pal was killed and another was badly injured.

She found herself mourning. But how do you mourn people when you’ve never met them?

You struggle.

A month later, the phone rang. It was Cpl. Jesse Schertz’s mother. Now being treated in Texas, the young Marine wanted to see his pen pal. Her support made a difference.

Read more at OCRegister

RIDE TO LIVE

Come whether you ride or not to enjoy food, music, prizes and fun! Meet and thank our Nations hero Medal Of Honor John Bacca along with other heroes!
Johns Story https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NrMWbY4cdEc

Saturday October 29, 2016
Elks Lodge Oceanside Ca
444 Country Club Lane, Oceanside CA 92054
11:00 am – 3:00 pm
$20.00 Per Person or $30.00 Per Couple
Music by INHALE

Vendor Booths Available POC Dave Francisco Ciscofsmc@gmail.com
760-214-6583

#SaveLives #EndSoldierSuicide #WeDoThisTogether
Visit the Event Page

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Help Us Deliver Some Christmas SWAG (Showing Warriors Americas Gratitude) Bags

Help Us Deliver Some Christmas SWAG (Showing Warriors Americas Gratitude) Bags

Dashing through the halls…the American Soldier Network will be once again delivering Christmas SWAG Bags (Showing Warriors Americas Gratitude) to our combat, ill and injured heroes this Christmas! We can not do it alone! WE NEED YOU, with your donations of IN Kind items, corporate sponsorship donations and funds to fill our bags. Please email us at info@americansoldiernetwork.org if you can be a part of this years SWAG Bags or you can donate now via this site on our donate button.
Thank you for helping us honor and thank our Warriors!

American Soldier Network 2015 Year in Review

February  6 & 7: Our annual hosting our Heroes to the Grammy’s Rehearsals always a memorable time for our combat wounded and Active Duty Heroes.

February 11: Hearts 4 Heroes this year were delivered to our US Navy SEAL Teams

February 12: we hosted Valentine Date Night for our Combat Wounded Ill & Injured and their spouses providing comedy night, dinner and desert!

MARCH 11-14: we supported & cheered at the Warrior Trials at Camp Pendleton

MAY: We had a fund raiser at the Irvine Improv with the Veterans of Comedy and TV’s David Koechner

JULY:  A Gold Star Family Reunion Day – with a picnic, pony rides, visit to the zoo, games and train ride!  “Freedom Fest Concert & Motorcycle Run” in  Castle Rock CO over 350 Bikers rode with Paul Teutle Sr of Orange County Choppers,  SOA cast members Rusty Coones, Emilio Rivera, MO McCrea through the amazing Colorado roads to the beautiful town of Castlerock to a great day of music, fun and food. Performing were, Great White, Patten and Goff, Ryan White, Mini KIIS, Kip Winger and headliner  Lou Gramm the voice of Foreigner!!!

OCTOBER: canned food drive with Montevideo Elementary School PTA, American Soldier Network delivering over 1300 canned foods to our Homeless Veterans

NOVEMBER:  3rd Annual Show your Soul Donate your Soles used shoe drive and Veterans Day party at the USS IOWA Battleship! A Red Carpet Day with celebrities, war fighters of all eras, civilians and thousands and thousands of SHOES!

DECEMBER: American Soldier Network’s 9th Annual Christmas SWAG Bags for our Combat Wounded Ill & Injured – we again delivered over 500 SWAG bags to our combat wounded ill and injured service members for the holidays. Always a highlight of our year! Unfortunately we in our circle lost 18 to suicide this year! That has turned our focus moving forward into 2016 on the development of our #HealingHappens campaign to raise awareness & help for the Veteran/Military Suicide epidemic in our country. Since 1999 we have lost over 200,000 veterans & active duty military to suicide, this must stop! WE NEED YOU to Help us spread the word. Check out www.crowdrise.com/healinghappens

American Soldier Network Now on eBay

American-soldier-network-healing-happensHello everyone!

I am happy to announce the launch of the American Soldier Network campaign on eBay!

Vanity url: www.ebay.com/healinghappens

Link for social: bit.ly/healinghappens

Please help spread the word.

The auction starts TODAY thru Nov 12 👍🏻👊🏻🎶🇺🇸 Guitars signed by
-Colorado Avalanche Scott “the Sherrif” Parker
– Kip Winger (solo)
– Ryan Weaver and his band
– Patten & Goff
– Mini KISS (entire band)
– Jack Russell (Great White)
– Led Zeppelin Experience (entire band)
– Lou Gramm (Voice of Foreigner)
– Paul Teutel Sn. (Orange County Choppers)
– Rusty Coones (Sons of Anarchy)
– Mo Mc Crae (SOA)
– Emilio Rivera (SOA)