As a follow-up to my last post, let’s meet the other members of the wounded-warrior event at the Palazzo this weekend. First, I spoke for a few minutes with Patricia Driscoll of the Armed Forces Foundation, an organization which has dedicated itself to helping families of wounded warriors since 9/11:
The Armed Forces Foundation is dedicated to providing comfort and solace to members of the military community through financial support, career counseling, housing assistance and recreational therapy programs. We offer these vital programs to active-duty and retired personnel, National Guard, Reserve components, and their loved ones.
We are a Washington, DC based nonprofit organization committed to serving the members of our Armed Services and assisting them in their time of greatest need. Since 2001 the foundation has provided hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay for hotel bills and to offset the expenses of families visiting a loved one in the hospital. Programs offered through the foundation include the Family Assistance Program, Injured Support Services, the Housing Assistance Program for troops returning to their communities after injury, Family Bereavement Assistance for surviving family members, as well as the Classic Outdoors Sports Program which includes hunting and fishing programs for troops and their families. The staff of the Foundation regularly visits with wounded troops at the Bethesda National Naval Medical Center and Walter Reed Army Medical Center to provide support, give gifts and show them our appreciation for their service and sacrifice.
I spoke with Patricia immediately after the event. Again, the atrium doesn’t lend itself well to my questions, but Patricia can be heard very well:
Southwest Airlines partnered with AFF and Sands to bring the veterans from hospitals in DC and San Antonio for their tribute at the Palazzo. That was a mission with personal resonance for Southwest customer service manager Jimbo Larsen, who served two tours of duty in Iraq and left active service as a staff sergeant. Jimbo reminds me that there is no such thing as a former Marine in this short interview. I also interviewed Casey Welch, a customer relations specialist at Southwest Airlines who is also one of their official bloggers at Nuts About Southwest. Casey was a big help to me during my coverage of the event, and once I found out that she’s been blogging since 2006, I told her that she had to do an interview with me:
Note: The Palazzo is covering my travel expenses for the trip.