KEY WEST, Fla. - “When I look out to this community, I
continue to think of battle buddy,” said Soldier Ride
Director Dan Schnock during a Soldier Ride welcome ceremony
held at the Truman Waterfront Jan. 11. Schnock said Key West
is the “battle buddy” depicted in the Wounded Warrior
Project's logo, which shows a Soldier carrying another
He was referring to the amount of support
Key West showed, as earlier 61 wounded warriors left Naval
Air Station Key West's Boca Chica Field to ride the annual
Wounded Warrior Project's Soldier Ride.
Wounded warriors ride outside
the gate of Naval Air Station Key West in the annual Soldier Ride.
Wounded Warrior Project's Soldier Ride is an opportunity for wounded
service members and veterans to use cycling and the bonds of service
in overcoming physical, mental, or emotional wounds. (U.S. Navy
photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Brian Morales)
Soldier Ride is an opportunity for wounded service members
and veterans to use cycling and the bonds of service in
overcoming physical, mental, or emotional wounds.
the Soldier Ride kick-off, Schnock accepted checks from the
Key West Area Chief Petty Officer Association for $13,501
and the Southernmost First Class Petty Officer Association
for $7,100. Funds were raised in 2014 by the CPOA and FCPOA
during the annual Soldier Ride Golf Tournament and the Key
West Classic Softball Tournament, respectively.
During the ride, wounded warriors departed Boca Chica Field
passing under an American flag raised high above the street
by an NAS Key West Fire and Emergency Services ladder truck.
Key West citizens waved flags along U.S. 1 as the riders
made their way toward the Truman Waterfront.
like I'm coming back to life again, regaining strength,
energy, and doing something that I always wanted to do,”
said Army Spec. Tomas Carrasquel, a first-time rider in this
year's Soldier Ride.
Carrasquel was injured July 2013
in Afghanistan and he now lives with a metal plate inside
“[Soldier Ride] makes me feel alive
again because I know people care and that's a good thing to
know. People that you don't even know,” said Carrasquel,
describing his reaction to the support from the Key West
“Right now, the Wounded Warrior Project
and these warriors you see in front of us have a bunch of
battle buddies out here in Key West. So thank you very much.
I really appreciate what you do,” Schnock said in closing.
More photos available below
By U.S. Navy MCS1C Brian Morales
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