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Operation PAL™ News




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Operation PAL™ Announcements
If it's new on the web site, you'll find it on one of our announcement pages! Different topics will be of interest to you throughout your Marine's career. Choose from the categories of Marine Parents' web sites to the right. The most recent announcements will be at the top.
 Participant Update: Cpl. Todd, 1st Recon
Added April 15, 2014
Cpl Todd

Cpl. Todd, 1st Recon, was injured by an explosive device in 2010 in Afghanistan and lost both of his legs and his left arm. Along with his faith, music has been a major component in his recovery, and he has worked extensively with the MusiCorps, an "...intensive rehabilitation program that helps [wounded, ill, and injured troops] play music and recover their lives."

Click here to learn more...

 Where Are They Now: LCpl. Timothy, 3rd LAR
Added July 17, 2012

Tim was wounded in December 2010 in Afghanistan. He had internal organ damage, and it is still questionable almost two years later if they can save his foot. But he is healing well and there have been some exciting changes in his life. We received this lovely letter from Tim’s mom, letting us know it was time for him to come off the list...

Click here to read more

 Where Are They Now: Recruit Maggie – MCRD PI
Added June 20, 2012

Maggie was on our list a short time. She injured her leg in boot camp so badly that she would never be able to pass the physical requirements of becoming a Marine, and eventually was discharged. She and her family are very grateful for your letters during her hospitalization and rehab. Here is the lovely letter to you from Maggie's Mom...

Click here to read more

 Participant Spotlight: Sgt. Brian, U.S. Army
Added June 20, 2012

We thought you'd like to hear about Brian's celebrity encounter. Brian is a double amputee who also has a TBI (traumatic brain injury) and was wheelchair-bound until just recently when he started working with his prosthetic legs. Even though he is beginning to have more mobility, he is not yet able to use them regularly...

Click here to read more

 60 Minutes Overtime segment with correspondent who interviews our wounded heroes
Added June 18, 2012

CBS News correspondent David Martin has been doing ongoing updates regarding our war injured for over ten years. In this segment, Martin discusses his reactions to covering the wounded heroes, and sharing stories about their “good days” and “bad days.” The segment is worth watching.

Click here to read more and get a link to the segment

Stefanie reading her last Operation PAL cards  Where are they now? Recruit Stefanie - MCRD PI
Added May 15, 2012

Stefanie was a new recruit at Parris Island in May 2011. Then June came and an incident that changed her forever. She was in a training exercise, lost her grip and fell over 20 feet, fracturing multiple vertebrae. Miraculously, she was not paralyzed, but the fractures were serious and pain was a huge factor. We were privileged to meet up with Stefanie and her Mother as they came through town after her discharge.

Click here to

LCpl Sam Gets Married  Former OpPAL LCpl. Sam 2nd CEB Gets Married
Added November 4, 2011

Remember Sam? He was injured by an IED in Afghanistan in January of 2010. He suffered compound fractures to both legs and lost his right foot in the explosion. However, Sam, a very athletic young man, pushed through all his surgeries and rehab and was out playing softball as quickly as he was able. Although he is no longer on our list, Sam recently let us know he tied the knot with Kristin on August 28th, 2011, amid a very timely lull during Hurricane Irene, and shared with us a link to a beautiful video that will make you feel like you were there.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl Jeff  Participant Spotlight: LCpl. Jeff, 3/5 Lima Co.
Added November 4, 2011

Jeff's Mom has provided us with an update on her son that we'd like to share with you. She wrote,

"Jeffrey seems to be doing ok, although he is very anxious to get back home. Lately he has sounded quite good and has taken two weeks of a computer class and seems to love it. He may go into that field in some way when he gets home. The class is one that the instructors go to the guys and offer it every now and then.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl Michael  Participant Update: LCpl. Michael, 1/1
Added September 26, 2011

Michael was on our list from September 2007 to May 2009. His mother said that in the first notification phone call she received, the USMC described his injuries by saying her son was "full of shrapnel" and had multiple severe fractures from an IED explosion in Iraq. When he came off of our list after two years, his father said he still faced several more surgeries as his healing would allow. These recoveries are long and arduous, but they are eased with continued support. In response to our recent update request, Michael's father said, "What a nice surprise to know you're still thinking of Michael!!!"

Click here to learn more...

LCpl Christopher  Participant Highlight: LCpl. Christopher, 3/5 Lima Co.
Added September 26, 2011

Corporal Christopher is a member of 3/5 "Dark Horse" and was wounded in Afghanistan by an IED blast. We met Christopher last October after he had just returned to the states and was still in the ICU. He's come a long way since then, but he still has a long way to go. He is a double amputee and has many other injuries. He also had to have major reconstruction surgery done on his right arm.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl John  Participant Update: LCpl. John, 2/3
Added August 19, 2011

Remember LCpl. John 2/3? He was on our list from 2006-2007. He has three Purple Hearts. When he was shot the first time, he considered it only a scratch. Lucky. The second time, the bullet went straight through. Lucky. The third time, the bullet hit him in the head. Not so lucky. Many hours, many prayers, many months and many miracles later, John's brain function improved and has continued to progress.

Click here to learn more...

Sgt james  Participant Highlight: Sgt. James, CLB-2
Added August 19, 2011

In the spring of 2010, Sgt. James was preparing his men for their deployment to Afghanistan. He was happy with the way his Marines were performing and progressing on the gun range.

"I am real content with my Marines right now," he said.

As their trainer, he is responsible for making sure each Marine is proficient with the equipment they will be using downrange, because for many of them it is the first time using new equipment.

Click here to learn more...

Cpl Michael  Participant Highlight: Cpl. Michael, 3/5
Added July 22, 2011

Michael came to Operation PAL™ as a member of "DarkHorse," the 3/5 Marines whose tour of duty in Afghanistan endured significant losses and injuries. "Spider," as Michael is known, was injured last December by an explosive device that left large shrapnel in his back and mangled one of his arms. As his treatment progressed he became faced with a decision: keep trying to rehabilitate the arm, or have it amputated.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl Juan  Participant Highlight: LCpl. Juan, 3/5 Kilo
Added June 17, 2011

Juan was injured in Afghanistan late last year and although his recovery will be a very long one, he has already come a long way.

His journey began when he encountered an IED that, among other injuries, took both of his legs and his right arm. We learned of him when visiting the hospital last Halloween and at that time he was in the ICU.

We talked to his family who were so very appreciative that they would hear from supporters across the country.

Click here to learn more...

Sgt Eddie  Participant Spotlight: Sgt. Eddie Speaks His Thanks
Added May 18, 2011

Sgt. Eddie, 3/2, has been on our list since 2009, but his wounds were sustained in 2005. Being shot twice in the head is an injury that creates its own timetable for recovery.

Eddie is constantly learning and re-learning, and his progress continues at a very slow pace.

Click here to learn more and listen to a voicemail from Eddie himself!

HM2 Anthony  Participant Highlight: HM2 Anthony
Added April 21, 2011

Anthony, Eric, Steven and Brandon were together in 2007 on the same watch in Iraq when the bridge they were on was bombed. All four were on our Operation PAL™ list but Eric, Steven and Brandon progressed enough to come off of our list.

Click here to learn more...

Cpl. John  Participant Highlight: Cpl. John
Added April 20, 2011

John is a Marine through and through. For a year he fought a traumatic brain injury he received in combat, only to be redeployed to Aghanistan where he encountered an IED that left him a quadriplegic. Last month you read a news story written about John, but we have more information we'd like to share about him.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl.David  Participant Highlight: LCpl. David
Added March 16, 2011

After many trips back and forth between hospitals and the rehab center, all the surgeries and fittings for his "bionic hand", David was released to his family home as of January 2011. He is now going into the MedBoards which means he's being medically discharged from the Marine Corps. This process may take the better part of a year and during this time he will be continuing physical therapy locally to adjust to his new prosthetic left eye and new hand.

Click here to learn more...

LCpl. Kevin is Dancing Again  Update on Participant: LCpl. Kevin is Dancing Again
Added February 17, 2011

Lance Corporal Kevin's life changed in early 2009 and he has been on Operation PAL™ a little over a year. Mom gave us a few updates and we thought we'd share them with you along with his 2009 and 2010 pictures.

Kevin has been home since December 19, 2009, and he has improved significantly. You'll notice in the "before" picture, which was taken right after his third brain surgery, he is very thin and needs a cane and very thick glasses. Over the past year he has been walking a lot better and he is now talking more. There are still many words he can't remember or say, but he gives it his best effort. His main problem is his memory. He can't remember past two or three minutes, but he is happy being home and he has regained all the weight he lost while in the hospital.

Click here to learn more...

HM2 Anthony and Family Celebrate New Home  Update on Participant: HM2 Anthony and Family Celebrate New Home
Added February 17, 2011

In January 2010 we featured HM2 Anthony and his family in our newsletter. You can read that story here. This year we'd like to give you an update. The photo of Anthony, Ivonne and AJ was taken in front of their very own Christmas tree, in their very own home, on the first of many holidays they hope to enjoy together with family and friends.

Click here to learn more...

Update on Participant: Gunnery Sgt. Marcus Celebrates New Baby  Update on Participant: Gunnery Sgt. Marcus Celebrates New Baby
Added August 18, 2010

Congrats to Gunnery Sgt. Marcus on his new baby boy! He was born in April, he weighed in at 10 lbs. 2 oz. and his name is Matthew. Mom and baby did just fine. Is Marcus a proud dad? You be the judge: we asked him for an update and got four photos of the baby and only one blurb on himself. We'll take that as good news!

Click here to learn more...

Participant Spotlight: Sgt. Joshua 2nd Recon  Participant Spotlight: Sgt. Joshua 2nd Recon
Added August 18, 2010

Sgt. Joshua suffered fractures to his back and arm and lost a leg after an IED hit his convoy in July 2009. He has been recovering since then, but he was recently well enough to take a well-deserved recuperative leave.

Upon arrival home, he was greeted warmly with a hometown hero’s welcome and a parade.

Click here to learn more...

Participant Spotlight: Corporal Sam 2nd CEB  Participant Spotlight: Corporal Sam 2nd CEB
Added July 21, 2010

Sam, who was originally deployed to Afghanistan, suffered compound fractures to both legs after being injured by an IED in January. His right foot was amputated, and he will be in rehab for most of the year. Sam’s dad says his son is in good spirits despite his loss. He was able to talk to Sam almost immediately after the incident, and it was Sam who did most of the consoling: “Dad, it’s part of the job. I would do it all again.” He wishes he could still be out in the field with his fellow Marines.

Click here to learn more...

Update on Former Participant: LCpl Josef Recently Married  Update on Former Participant: LCpl Josef Recently Married
Added July 20, 2010

Card Writers Spotlight: Center One Prayer Support Group  Card Writers Spotlight: Center One Prayer Support Group
Added June 23, 2010

This month we’d like to highlight a very special group regularly sending cards to our wounded warriors – the Center One Unit of Parkhouse Providence Point. The Center One Prayer Support Group is comprised of elderly and chronically ill residents of all ages whose goals are to help others find strength and comfort through faith, make a difference in the life of someone else, and to honor God.

Click here to learn more...

Sunday School Spotlight  Sunday School Spotlight: Baptist Church in North Carolina
Added May 26, 2010

On Saturday night, May 1st, the 5th and 6th grade Sunday School class from a Baptist Church in Burnsville, North Carolina gathered to work on one of their favorite projects – sending cards and letters to wounded Marines. Kathy, a Marine Mom whose son is in 3/6 Lima Company, coordinated a sleepover for her class; the evening involved fellowship, prayer, fun, pizza and most of all, a lot of creative card and sign-making from a very enthusiastic bunch of kids!

Click here to

 Operation PAL™ Marine Reenlists
Added April 29, 2010

Cpl Joshua  Participant Spotlight: Corporal Joshua 1/24 Alpha Co
Added April 29, 2010

Corporal Joshua was wounded in January of 2007. He took a gunshot wound to the neck and was paralyzed from the shoulders down. He can barely see and hardly speak. He constantly suffers from infection of some sort or another and there are scary times when his life is in jeopardy.

He was engaged when we first talked to his family, but the engagement has since broken off. The two of them are still friends and she visits quite often. This is a difficult circumstance for any young couple and they are doing the best they can given the situation.

Click here to read more of Cpl Joshua’s story…

Pepsi Refresh  Give One Minute a Day for Wounded Warriors
Added April 1, 2010

Attention Marine families and supporters! WE NEED YOUR HELP!

The Marine Parents outreach program, Purple Heart Hero Support™, is in the running for a $250,000 Pepsi Refresh Project grant and we need your vote to win the competition!

With the Pepsi Grant, we will be able to turn our 200 meals a year served in 2 hospitals into 20,000 meals served a year in 4 hospitals. There are many great ideas out there, but who could be a more worthy recipient than our Wounded Warriors and their families?

Take one minute a day to vote for our Wounded Warriors!

Click here to watch the You Tube video and learn how to vote!

Volunteer Spotlight: Lori  Volunteer Spotlight: Lori
Added March 10, 2010

Lori is a wonderful angel who visits our wounded and ill Marines, giving comfort and support as she goes. She volunteers not only with Operation PAL™, but also helps Purple Heart Hero Support™ provide weekly meals to Wounded Warriors. She is also an ‘official hugger’ for sendoffs and homecomings. The strong spirit of giving in Lori’s family dates back to her great grandma, who used to give fresh bread and other baked goods to families who had been deeply affected by the Depression.
Click here to learn more...

Participant Spotlight: LCpl John 2/7 Weapons  Participant Spotlight: LCpl John 2/7 Weapons
Added February 26, 2010

Three years hold many ups and downs for families of the wounded. In March of 2007, Marine Parents’ member Chris posted that her son had been injured in Iraq. He was shot in the lower leg and when he went down, he was shot again. That bullet travelled up through his leg. His fellow Marines determined where the gunfire originated and took out their target. That action, and quick medical aid, is what saved John (J.T.)’s life the first time.
Click here to learn more...

Participant Spotlight: HM2 Anthony 2/7 Fox Co  Participant Spotlight: HM2 Anthony 2/7 Fox Co
Added January 15, 2010

From time to time we spotlight one of our Operation PAL™ participants and today it's all about HM2 Anthony*. Anthony is in the Navy and the "HM" in "HM2" means 'hospital man.' His Naval rank is "Petty Officer 2nd Class." You can learn more about Navy Corpsmen and HM2 Anthony's story at the link below.
Click here to learn more...

Operation PAL™ Marine at the White House  Operation PAL™ Marine at the White House
Added November 19, 2009

Operation PAL™ Marine, Gunnery Sergeant Marcus, and a group of Wounded Warriors from Walter Reed Army Medical Center show President Obama a thing or two about wheelchair basketball. You don’t want to miss this incredible video footage. The smile offered by Gunnery Sergeant Marcus is contagious and the entire video is sure to touch your heart. Operation PAL™ Manager Barbara Gemmell writes, “I'm just so excited for Marcus; I wanted to share this video asap.”
Click here to watch video...

 Outdated Programs and Alerts
Added November 19, 2009

We are working to clarify and alert folks to holiday emails. Please take action if you receive:

"A Recovering American Soldier"
Click here to learn more...

Operation PAL™ Marines at Marine Corps Marathon and 10K  Operation PAL™ Marines at Marine Corps Marathon and 10K
Added October 28, 2009

A few of our current and former Operation PAL™ Marines participated in the annual Marine Corps Marathon and 10K in Washington D.C. on October 25th. The Marathon gives our wounded and ill an attainable goal and Marines produce a very competitive bunch. They work hard in their physical therapy and push each other to succeed because they want to do well in the race.
Click here to learn more...

 Operation PAL™ News is Here!
Added October 13, 2009

Gratitude from a Wounded Marine  Gratitude from a Wounded Marine
Added September 8, 2009

His left hand still works so that’s what Sergeant Eddie uses to express thanks for kind words of encouragement sent via Operation PAL™.
You can read so much about his character through the hand-written note: His determination to use what abilities he has to communicate what he needs to say, for example. Or his compassion for others in that he wants to make sure you know your prayers and cards are appreciated.
Click here to learn more about Sgt Eddie and read his hand-written note.

Operation PAL™ Marine Receives Hero  Operation PAL™ Marine Receives Hero's Welcome Home
Added July 16, 2009

"In a place where crowds are a given and homecomings happen every day, a couple of hundred people, most perfect strangers, gathered to surprise one man in a way that doesn't happen every day." - That is how KUSA*TV out of Denver, Colorado opened their recent coverage of Operation PAL™ Marine Lance Corporal John Thomas Doody and the "Welcome Home" he received at the Denver International Airport.
Click here for touching story and video...

VAC Provides Free Air Transportation  VAC Provides Free Air Transportation
Added June 22, 2009

“Imagine returning home from combat facing devastating injuries and long term hospitalization – in a facility hundreds of miles away from your family. Imagine somebody brings you together.”
The Veterans Airlift Command provides free air transportation to wounded warriors, veterans and their families for medical and other compassionate purposes through a national network of volunteer aircraft owners and pilots.
For more information, Click here to visit the VAC web site

Fund Raising for the Care Package Project  Fund Raising for Operation Prayers and Letters
Added June 17, 2009

Team Marine Parents participants are actively preparing for their events and raising donations toward their chosen outreach program and goal. Make your next donation to Operation PAL™ in support of a Team Marine Parents participant’s goal and watch their progress as the goal meter updates!
To view participant bio pages and learn how to donate toward a participant’s goal, Click here...


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