This is from one of the class of Leadership Jacksonville 2010:
One of my classmates from JU, Andy Conrad, former Naval Aviator and now a Delta pilot, has a 20 year-old nephew from Jacksonville who was grievously wounded by an IED in Afghanistan late last week. His name is Tyler Southern and he has lost both legs and one arm, and may still lose the other. He arrived at Bethesda two days ago via Germany where he is just starting to come out of consciousness.
A couple of things have happened since I learned this from Andy.
- I alerted one of my former Navy bosses, Rear Admiral Kevin Delaney because he is on the board of the Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) which is based here in Jacksonville, but serves injured combat veterans all over the country.
- He in turn alerted the WWP Bethesda team who actively and personally assisted the family upon Tyler's arrival from Germany.
- One of Tyler's former high school classmates now apparently works for the new Jacksonville Sharks Arena Football League team, and tomorrow night the Sharks are playing a home game at 7:35 PM and originally intended to donate 100 percent of the proceeds to Tyler to aid in his recovery.
- Tyler's family has unselfishly asked that those proceeds instead be donated to WWP so that even more injured veterans will benefit.
- Since the immediate family is bedside in Bethesda, my friend Andy will accept the donation at mid-field (mid-arena?) on behalf of the family and WWP.
I am asking you to join me tomorrow night at the game, or at least alert your friends that tomorrow (Friday, May 14) is Military Appreciation Night for the Sharks game and that with their attendance they will be supporting a local hero and a great cause.