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Run In Remembrance

 Running In Remembrance: Gulf War I

I started this individual fundraising page after getting involved with the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation in 2014. I ran in a relay event called 500 For the Fallen where I was honored to run from the Uncle Sam Statue in Arlington, Massachusetts to the Soldiers & Sailors Memorial in Boston Commons carrying the flag and dog tags of fallen patriots. Friends, friends of friends, and acquaintances were generous to donate $1105 to Children of Fallen Patriots leading up to that run which was over the Memorial Day Weekend.

Today, I serve on the board for the 500 For The Fallen Relay and am looking forward to making our event bigger and better in 2017.  But, there's still a long way to go before Memorial Day 2017. In particular, I have 26.2 miles ahead of me on November 6, 2016 when I run the NYC Marathon for the first time. 

With NYC only a few days away, I wanted to revive my page here and invite you to contribute to Children of Fallen Patriots and help us raise money for those who lost a parent in the line of duty. One hundred percent of your contribution goes directly to benefit these kids...no money is siphoned off for a board or other costs. Below is why I give time to CFPF.

I served in combat during the Gulf War with Mike Battery 5th Battalion 10th Marines during the war. In the first combat engagement on the ground, almost a month before the invasion of Kuwait began; the Marines faced down 3 Iraqi armored divisions.  On January 29, 1991, eleven U.S. Marines perished in a battle for a little seaside city called al Khafji during the Gulf War.

Anyway, since becoming involved with Children of Fallen Patriots, I became aware of the high number of children of fallen patriots who have yet to be identified for assistance. Subsequently, I connected with Kim Mongrella and her son Anthony. Of the 11 al Khafji Marines, Sgt. Garret "Mongo" Mongrella, had a son with his wife Kim just before his deployment in 1990 (pictured below in his father's arms just before the Gulf War).  Since this time, Children of Fallen Patriots has taken care of Anthony's student debt accumulated during his time working on a degree at the University of Iowa.

Witnessing what CFPF does first-hand has gotten me even more fired up to help them raise awareness and funds as I run. 

 

LINK TO YOUTUBE VIDEO OF US MARINE ARTILLERY AT AL-KHAFJI

 

PHOTO GALLERY DESCRIPTION

1.  T-shirt...this is the shirt that I had custom made to honor the Marines at al Khafji.  Sgt. Garret Mongrella was the crew chief for the LAV that was destroyed during the battle. He and 10 other Marines perished.

2.  A picture of me next to a burned out Soviet era T-72 tank that Mike Battery took out during the Gulf War during the month of Feb. 1991

3. Pictured at home in his easy chair holding his newborn son Anthony, is Sgt. Garret "Mongo" Mongrella just before he deployed to the Gulf back in 1990.  He perished along with his LAV crew in the second day of the battle for al Khafji (29 January 1991).

4. Last is the picture of the burned out hull that was once the LAV crewed by Sgt. Mongrella and team.  Cpl. Steve Bentzlin, Cpl Ismael Cotto, Lcpl Dion Stevenson, Lcpl James Lumplins, Lcpl Frank Allen, Lcpl David Snyder, Lcpl Thomas Jenkins, Lcpl Daniel Walker, Lcpl Mike Linderman, and PFC Scott Schroder.