After 2 unforgettable weeks of making warrior wishes come true in New England, Chicago, Minnesota, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh & New York…
My dad headed west to kicked off week 3 at our 7th game this season. This week he will be honoring warriors in San Francisco, Los Angeles & Arizona. He took off Wednesday afternoon & had an overnight layover in Denver before catching an early morning connection to the city by the bay.
San Francisco is one of the coolest cities in America. In fact, it’s my favorite vacation destination! It’s a city like no other. Steep streets, the painted ladies, fishermans wharf, Alcatraz, Muir Woods, the Golden Gate Bridge & Trolly cars are just a few of the many amazing things that make the city so unique.
We have made a lot of unforgettable warrior wishes come true in San Francisco throughout the years. Here are some of our favorite moments.
We have also been fortunate to make some incredible friendships. In 2012, after ESPN shared our story on Monday Night Football, we received a message from a guy named Lou on Facebook. Lou had seen our story & noticed our next scheduled game was in San Francisco. Lou offered to help us out in any way possible. He & his friends went above and beyond to help us provide a once in a lifetime experience to the warriors in 2012 & we instantly became “friends for life.”
Lou & his crew have provided tickets, tailgates, meals, transportation & even accommodations for the past 5 years. They are truly amazing people with big hearts & a passion for the military. We are forever grateful for their support, friendship & Generosity.
Lou picked up my dad from the airport upon his arrival in San Fran. They met up with Vinny (one of Lou’s friends who has also helped make Wishes come true over the years) and made their way to Santa Clara to meet up with the warriors.
Today we are honored to be hosting Marine Sgt Juan Ramirez, Army Sgt Karl Loucks & Navy Vietnam Veteran Clyde Smith at the 49ers game. (“Meet the Warriors” below)
Marine Sgt Juan Ramirez was first to arrive with his wife Jeanette. They had actually flown up from Southern California last night and planned a little 3 day vacation getaway around this game. We want to thank Staybridge Suites for partnering up to provide accommodations!
My dad introduced Sgt Ramirez to Vinny & they got to know a little about him & his 11 years of service as a marine, as they escorted them to the San Francisco 49ers museum.
Featuring 11 unique gallery and exhibit spaces, the 49ers Museum presented by Sony is a 20,000 square foot facility dedicated to the 49ers past, present and future. The Museum features some amazing 49ers memorabilia including their Lombardi trophies! It is dedicated to its values of education, innovation and heritage and is committed to serving as an exciting, engaging home for fans of all ages.
The 49ers museum is an absolute must do when attending a niners game. Especially when your a big 49ers fan & it’s your first game ever, like all 3 warriors we were hosting today. We want to thank Jesse and his staff at the museum for providing this experience.
Army Sgt Karl Loucks & Navy Vietnam Veteran Clyde Smith were nominated to us by Mikhail Venikov, an Army Ranger who runs his own non profit in California. Army Sgt Kyle Loucks was next to arrive, with his 3 year old son Hendrix. Navy Vet Clyde Smith and his wife Claudette arrived shortly after.
All three warriors thoroughly enjoyed touring the museum and took lots of pictures before meeting back up with my dad & Vinny at 4pm to head inside Levi Stadium!
We wanted to make sure everyone was inside early to take advantage the 49ers BNY Mellon Field Suite! The 49ers BNY Mellon Field Level Suite is probably one of the coolest places to hang out during all the pregame festivities. Thanks to our friend Gus, who provided the access, It gave the warriors the opportunity to literally walk out to the sidelines and watch warmups. It also gave them the opportunity to high five all the players as they made their way on to the field!
Top notch food & drink we’re also provided in the suite. It was a once in a lifetime experience & the game hadn’t even started yet!
Just before kickoff, we all rose to our feet for the National Anthem. The National Anthem is by far one of our favorite parts of every mission. Watching the warriors stand and salute the flag is truly something special.
During the game we were able to introduce our friend Mike to the warriors. Mike has also been donating his tickets & helping us make Wishes come true for the past few years. We are thankful for his support!
The guys also got to meet the Air Force guys who performed the pregame flyover.
This was by far the most entertaining game of the early NFL season. The Niners got off to a slow start & threw an interception on the very first play of the game. On the 2nd play of the game they were trailing 7-0 as Todd Gurley scored a Touchdown. Gurley also added 2 more touchdowns in the first half to give the Rams a 24-13 lead at the half.
The 49ers didn’t give up and they fought back in the 2nd half. With 2 minutes left in the game, Carlos Hyde sent the stadium into a frenzy scoring a potential game tying TD! Unfortunately, their 2 point conversion failed & the 49ers fell to the Rams by the score of 41-39.
Despite the loss, the warriors had the experience of a lifetime at their first ever 49ers game thanks to our friends Lou, Vince, Gus & Mike!
We also want to thank Jesse at the 49ers Museum for providing he pregame tour, Staybridge suites for providing accommodations for Sgt Ramirez & New Era Cap for providing Niners Caps to the warriors.
TOGETHER WE MAKE WARRIOR WISHES COME TRUE!
Most importantly we want to thank Army Sgt Kyle Loucks, Navy Vietnam Veteran Clyde Smith and Marine Sgt Juan Ramirez for their selfless service & sacrifices to our country! We Salute you!
My dad will be heading across the bay tomorrow to make Warrior Wishes come true at the Oakland A’s game tomorrow night. Stay tuned for more details!
MEET THE WARRIORS
MARINE SGT JUAN RAMIREZ
Juan Ramirez originally from Brownsville TX, was raised in Northern California and lived there with his mom and sister. He joined the USMC right off high school in 2001 and served our country for 12 1/2 years. Juan has lived everywhere including Hawaii, Japan, Singapore, Bahrain, Kuwait, and served multiple tours to Iraq. Juan is married with 4 children. Unfortunately his military career was affected after suffering multiple injuries. He is now a Wounded Warrior and is 100% disabled in a permanent status. Juan strives every day to make his daily activities “normal” but his love for the military life he had, he wouldn’t change it for this world.
ARMY SGT KARL LOUCKS
I enlisted in the Army to be a combat medic 19 Sep 2017 from Memphis, TN. Assigned to 1-501 PIR “Geronimo!” 4/25th Infantry Division, Ft. Richardson in Anchorage, Alaska 2008-2011. Deployed to Khost, Afghanistan 2009-2010. Went on DUSTWUN mission searching for Bowe Bergdahl who was in the same battalion.
It was an honor to host these brave warriors and make their Warrior Wishes come true. If you know a deserving warrior who would love to attend a game on our “All32in17” mission please nominate them today!