Game 39 – Warrior Wishes Come True In St. Louis
On September 13th we kicked off our 4th annual “All32in17” mission to make warrior wishes come true at all 32 NFL stadiums in 1 season. Less than 100 days later, we completed the mission by hosting Warriors at the Rams game at our 32nd stadium in St.Louis thanks to our friends at Edward Jones.
Today we had the honor of hosting SGT Kent Burns, SPC Katie Knight & honored the legacy of SGT Ben Prange. (meet the Warriors below)
Our friend Don Gaylord from Edward Jones went above and beyond to help make these Warriors wishes come true in a “Suite” way! Edward Jones provided pre game field passes & a luxury suite!!!
The Rams, in their bright yellow “Color Rush” jerseys, gave the Warriors plenty to cheer about when they quickly jumped out to a 21-3 lead before halftime!
During the halftime break, my dad gathered everyone in the suite to thank Edward Jones for providing a once in a lifetime experience & to recognize each warrior for their service and sacrifices. He got emotional as he requested a moment a silence for SGT Prange’s ultimate sacrifice.
Tavon Austin scored his 2nd touchdown of the game to increase the Rams lead late in the 3rd quarter.
The Bucs did their best to make a comeback scoring 2 touchdowns & a field goal in the 4th, but came up short.
The win by the Rams snapped our 7 game losing streak.
There are talks that the Rams may not be back in St. Louis next year. Which means this very well could be the last game the Rams ever play in St Louis!
We would like to thank Don Gaylord & Edward Jones Investments for making these warrior wishes come true. We would also like to thank New Era for providing Rams Caps.
Even though our mission to host heroes at all 32 NFL stadiums in 1 season is officially accomplished, doesn’t mean our mission is over. My dad will be taking a week off for the holidays and will look to get back in action in 2 weeks. Stay tuned for more details.
MEET THE WARRIORS
SSG BENJAMIN PRANGE
Staff Sgt Ben Prange was an awesome man. He grew up in a close knit family in rural Nebraska. He had an older sister and brother. He suffered some losses as a child losing both his mother and father at a young age. He lived with his grandparents in Roca Nebraska and graduated from Norris High School. While attending Norris he met his wife Liz. They eventually had two boys Corbin and Dillion. Ben joined the United States Army in 2007. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion 12th Infantry Brigade Combat Team 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson in Colorado Springs Colorado. He was on his third deployment when he was killed in action. Ben enjoyed playing video games and watching football. He was also a devoted father and husband and will be forever missed and loved.
SPC KATIE KNIGHT
Katie Knight served in the United States Army for 4 years active duty and 4 years in the Missouri National Guard. She was an E4 Specialist & an Engineer as a Heavy Equipment Operator. Katie loved serving very much. She now battles PTSD. Her service dog, Minders, was trained through Missouri Patriot Paws out of Rolla MO. and helps her with her PTSD.
SGT KENT BURNS
Master Sergeant Burns entered active duty with the United States Army on 26 May 1992 as an Infantry Mortar Man. During his career he also served as a Signal Soldier and retired on 1 June 2012 as a Career Counselor.
Master Sergeant Burns served at Fort Hood, Texas; Darmstadt, Germany; Katterbach, Germany; Heidelberg, Germany; and Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.
Master Sergeant Burns has deployed to Bosnia in 1995-96 and again in 1998; to Saudi Arabia in 2001, Kuwait in 2002, and Iraq in 2003.
His military awards and decorations include the Meritorious Service Medal (1 OLC), the Army Commendation Medal (2 OLC), the Army Achievement Medal (7 OLC), Army Superior Unit (2nd Awd), Good Conduct Medal (6th Awd), National Defense Service Medal (2nd Awd), Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2nd Awd), Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Armed Forces Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal w/ Campaign Star (2nd Awd), Noncommissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon (3rd Awd), Army Service Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon (4th Award), the NATO Medal and the Career Counselor Badge.
He is married to Jody Burns and has five children: Ashley, 20; Austin, 20; Colin, 13; Emma, 10 and Jackson, 5. He is currently Fort Leonard Wood’s Enlisted Strength Manager with the Department of the Army.
In his spare time: he volunteers as a youth sports coach for Fort Leonard Wood; Secretary for the Waynesville Masonic Lodge; Vice President of the Waynesville High School’s Athletic Booster Club and an elected member of the Pulaski County Extension Board. For fun: he enjoys spending time with his family; participating in local 5K runs; watching his daughter’s college soccer games and attends home games as a season ticket holder for the St Louis Rams
After the game, the Burns family told us they had an “Amazing Experience”. SGT Burns wife told us that Kent & the kids couldn’t stop talking about the experience. And thats coming from a Rams season ticket holder! It was an honor to make this 21 year veterans warrior wish come true!