The past week has really taken a toll on my dad – for the first time in 4 and half years, he was a little under the weather. Between Sunday’s Raider game, when it poured rain all day, combined with Thursday’s Packers game, where it was in the 30’s, was not a good combination.
But as they say, the show must go on, and go on it did. Despite being sick and needing a good night sleep, my dad was back on the road Saturday night heading to Kansas City to make Warrior Wishes come true at the Chiefs game!
Here are some of our favorite memories making Warrior Wishes come true in Kansas City.
While my dad en route to KC, Army Sgt Jimmie Horn was about to get a big surprise! His wife Andrea had nominated him for the Chiefs game & wanted to surprise him the opportunity. As you know, we LOVE surprising the Warriors!
Since my dad’s flight did not arrive until 8pm, he set up a surprise dinner at Joes BBQ And our friends from KC, Marty Burnett and Randy Lutz, helped pull off the surprise! Jerry at Joes BBQ set it up so we could surprise him in the basement conference room, considering it was so busy upstairs . This made the look on Jimmies face even more priceless as he must have been thinking thinking “what in the hell am I doing here?” He soon understood why.
My dad hated missing the surprise but knew SGT Horn was in good hands with Marty & Randy. They told him all about it when he arrived at the hotel to meet the warriors. It was a pleasure and honor to meet both Andrea & Jimmie, as well as our other guests Army Capt Finn Fraser and his girlfriend Sarah Laccabue, who had flown in from Philly for their FIRST EVER GAME at Arrowhead! We stayed up and got to know each other a little before heading to our hotel rooms around 10.
Marty, Randy & their families were a huge part of this experience, not only helping with the surprise, but they also provided tickets and hotel rooms. My dad definitely enjoyed the night in an actual bed.
The next morning everyone met down in the lobby at 8am to catch that first shuttle to the stadium. The Warriors were like “kids in a candy store” & excited for the experience!
Arrowhead stadium is one of the best stadiums in the NFL & it’s LOUD! Upon arrival, they got a few good pictures in front of the stadium, walked through the “Fan Experience” and met up with Don Munce, who invited us to his tailgate for the 2nd straight year. Don is a friend of one of our previous guests Andy Butterworth, who will be meeting up with everyone after the game for dinner.
As always, the Munce Tailgate was awesome and the food was great too. Each week they prepare dishes from the opposing teams city. Today the Chiefs were hosting the New Orleans Saints, so naturally Gumbo was on the menu. My dad said both the Gumbo and Turkey Stew were delicious! We thanked Don and got a big group picture before we headed into the stadium!
This was SGT Horns First regular season game & as I mentioned before, Finn and Sarah’s First Game ever At Arrowhead. You could certainly see their excitement through the big smiles on their faces. That excitement grew as the game went on. Spencer Ware gave the warriors plenty to cheer about as continued his successful season & lead the Chiefs to a 27-20 victory!
After the game, everyone headed over to Buffalo Wild Wings for our annual KC Warrior Wishes “alumni dinner.” My dad reached out to all of our previous Kansas City guests and invited them to dinner, however, only a few were able to attend. One of our original guests from our first mission in 2012, Ismael “Gator” Alvarez and 2013 guest Andy Butterworth joined this years group.
For the 4th straight year, Adam and his staff at Buffalo Wild Wings “bombarded” everyone with every flavored wing you could imagine and nobody left that table hungry!! In fact, almost everyone took home a box for a midnight snack, or to eat in the car on the way home.
Operation Warrior Wishes couldn’t have made this experience possible without Marty and Randy, along with their wives Tracy & Cassie for their incredible support – not just this year – but for the past 4 years!!! Your hands on and financial help, along with your hospitality is GREATLY appreciated!
We also would like to thank New Era For providing Chiefs caps, Joes BBQ and Buffalo Wild Wings for providing meals for the Warriors, and helping with the surprise!
As always our BIGGEST THANK YOU goes to Army Sgt Jimmie Horn, Army Cpt Finn Fraser, Army Sgt Ismael Alvarez and Army Sgt Andy Butterworth. THANK YOU all for your service to our great country! It’s appreciated, has not gone unnoticed & will never be forgotten!
My dad will be back on the road early tomorrow morning to make warrior wishes come true at our 2nd Denver Broncos game this season. Stay tuned for more details!
Contact Craig for more information about the mission (630) 339-6714