CHW donated nearly $90,000 to OIF-OEF veteran programs and charities in 2013; New events planned, permits issued for 2014 celebration honoring wounded veterans and their families.
NORTHPORT, NY — January 29, 2014 —There were cheers and there were tears, but mostly there was healing as 22 tri-state wounded veterans of Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and their families came to Northport for the inaugural Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend in September of 2012. Now, organizers are planning a series of fund-raising and veterans’ events that will build up to a second Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend on September 5-7, 2014.
As of today, more than 48,000 American service men and women have been physically and or psychologically injured as a result of OEF and/or OIF. In working with organizations that advance the recovery of these veterans, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, Cow Harbor Warriors has encouraged its community to help to create an annual weekend of recreation, celebration and appreciation in order to honor and enable these veterans from the tri-state area.
“It’s hard to put into words how much the Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend meant to my fellow veterans, my family and me,” said Sergeant Robert Gil Jr. who participated in the inaugural event. “To see a community united in support of our veterans was a touching reminder of what we’ve fought and sacrificed for.”
According to Cow Harbor Warriors President Rocco Donnino, the Village of Northport has now issued all the permits necessary for the 2014 weekend’s activities. He said his group is planning a busy series of events throughout 2014 that will raise funds and awareness for Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend and the organizations that advance the recovery and well being of wounded veterans and veterans in need from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars
“It is unfortunate that we could not hold a Warrior Weekend in 2013,” Donnino said. “However, that did not prevent us from continuing to honor and enable our wounded warriors and veterans in need and supporting those organizations that can provide the help they deserve for their sacrifice to our country ”
In December 2013, Cow Harbor Warriors organized a year-end fund raising event for the Hero Hunger Health Project run by the Northport Veterans Medical Center. This program helps to feed the most vulnerable veterans, including many who served in OEF/OIF. Cow Harbor Warriors donated $5,000 to the HHHP, bringing its total 2013 donations to almost $90,000.
In addition to the events and festivities of the September 2014 Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend itself, the organization is planning a series of local community events throughout the year that are aimed at raising funds and awareness that will support the weekend, as well as the veterans and their families who will be invited and hosted by Cow Harbor Warriors. Following the same strategy as in 2012, Cow Harbor Warriors will look to local vendors and businesses to support all aspects of the weekend and additional 2014 community events.
Donnino noted that, along with the benefits veterans and their families receive, the weekend’s rewards extend to the broader community as well.
“When you look at our costs to support the entire weekend of veteran’s activities, you see that the organization supported the local economy. Plus, we attracted sponsors and visitors from as far away as Georgia and Florida who came to help us celebrate our men and women in uniform,” he said. “But there’s also an intangible benefit when the community comes together to honor wounded veterans and veterans in need. Celebrating the best among us brings out the best within us.”
A variety of activities are planned for the second Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend, including:
Warrior Welcome Parade and reception
The Capt. Joseph J. Boccia Jr. USMC 4-Mile Warrior Run
Fishing for Freedom Fishing Tournament
Driving for the Brave Golf Tournament
Adaptive Water Sports
Beach Bum Bootcamp
Breakout Training and Wellness Sessions
Northport Sunset Clam Bake
Farewell Warrior Breakfast
Interested parties may honor friends and family members who serve by making a donation in their name or becoming a sponsor of the Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend. All tax-deductible donations received will directly support the weekend, benefit participating warriors and their families and assist other veteran organizations and programs.
For more information about the weekend event and how to participate, please visit www.cowharborwarriors.com.
About Cow Harbor Warriors
Established in 2012, “Cow Harbor Warriors” is 501(c)(3) not for profit organization. It is made up of a team of dedicated Northport community members focused on "honoring and enabling" tri-state wounded veterans and veterans in need from Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) by raising funds and awareness and enlisting the community’s support for organizations that advance veterans past their visible and invisible injuries. The Cow Harbor Warrior Weekend was created as a way to raise funds and awareness for veterans and veterans organizations, by inviting tri-state wounded veterans and their families and community members to a weekend of recreation, celebration and appreciation of veterans,.