Kicking Off Our 2015 Mission in Oakland!

September 13, 2015

4 years ago my dad & I set out on a father & son journey that turned into a life changing mission.


After hosting more than 70 warriors from opening night in New York to the Super Bowl in New Orleans, we decided to keep our mission going and created “Operation Warrior Wishes,” a 501c3 non profit foundation.
Our mission is to honor heroes & keep legacies alive by providing once in a lifetime experiences to warriors from the battlefields to the ballfields.
Since 2012 we have been honored to host more than 1000 warriors & Gold Star families to more than 300 events nationwide.
Over the next 99 days my dad will be on the road traveling by planes, trains & a lot of $1 Megabusses, to host & honor military heroes at all 32 NFL stadiums in 1 season for our 4th year in a row!  So buckle up & get ready to be inspired as you follow us on this wild ride.
We are kicking off our mission at the Raiders game today by honoring SGT Nicholas Starks, SSG Mike Garcia & the legacy of SPC Joseph Graves. (See their bio’s below)
Operation Warrior Wishes couldn’t have made today possible without the following support. We would like to thank Virgin America for providing transportation, Stay Bridge Suites (San Fran) for accommodations, the Oakland Raiders for tickets & field passes, our friends Vince & Lou for tickets, New Era for providing Raiders Caps, and the Bad Boys of BBQ for hosting us today at your amazing tailgate party with some of the best & craziest fans in the NFL!
Army SGT Nicholas Starks
unknown (5)
Nick joined the Army in 2004. His MOS was 13b field artillery. He deployed to Iraq in 2007 where he performed combat missions.  He was hit several times by IED’s but the last hit sent him home 100% disabled with a TBI and PTSD.  Nick was medically discharged in 2010 from injuries sustained in Iraq.
Today, Nick enjoys spending time with his wife, 2 young daughters and his service dog Ace.
 unknown (2)
SGT Starks was nominated by his wife, Noe’l, who told us that Nick is a huge Raiders fan!  Noe’l is incredibly proud of how far Nick has come. “He’s an amazing father to our 2 little girls and an incredible husband. Nick is truly my Hero.”
He’s one of our heroes too.  It’s an honor to make SGT Starks Warrior Wish Come True at the Raiders game!

Army SPC Joseph Graves 

KIA 25 Jul 06  Baghdad, Iraq

unknown (1)

Joey Graves was born in Castro Valley and was raised by his father in the East Bay.  Being very involved in sports, of course Joey was an Oakland Raiders fan.  Joey was the only child of Kevin Graves.  

When our country was attacked on 9/11, Joe was a sophomore at Liberty High School.  That event had enough of an impact, that in his senior year Joey joined the Army though the delayed entry program.  He was 17 years old.

His basic training was at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri.  He then spent a month jumping out of perfectly good airplanes to get his wings at Ft, Benning, Georgia.

His first deployment lasted a year and was spent at different bases in South Korea.

He then joined his unit, the 110th MP Company, at Ft. Hood, Texas where he began training for his deployment to Iraq.  Three weeks prior to deployment he came home to be the best man and his father’s wedding.  That would be the last time that most of the family would see Joe alive.

unknown (3)

His father went back to Ft. Hood on the day of deployment to say goodbye to his only son, for what would be the last time.

On 25 July 06, a parent’s worst nightmare came true as Kevin received a knock on the door from two uniformed officers.

Since then Kevin and his wife Leianne have kept the memory of Joey and all his fallen comrades alive through their foundation ‘Some Gave All – The Joey Graves Foundation’ (  Today the Graves, as do so many others, hold dear the memories so that they will never forget…We shall never forget.

We are honored to be hosting SPC Joey Graves father, Kevin, today at the Raiders game in his son’s honor.  We ask that you share his story and encourage you to support their foundation to help keep SPC Graves legacy alive.  Gone But Never Forgotten.
SSG Mike Garcia
unknown (4)

Mike Garcia is a native of Texas.  We won’t mention who his favorite team is.  Mike joined the Army right out of high school and completed his basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood.  He then was assigned to the 110th MP Company at Ft. Hood, Texas, where he met SPC Joey Graves.  They became fast friends and did everything together.


On 25 July 06, Mike Garcia was the gunner in the lead Humvee when the convoy that he and Joey were traveling in was ambushed.  Mike’s vehicle took the initial explosion that stopped the caravan.  Even though the vehicle was disabled, Mike continued to provide fire to not only protect his men, but repel the attack.

Mike Garcia received aArmy Commendation medal with Valor for his courageous actions that day.

Mike and Joey’s dad, Kevin, have developed a unique and close relationship.  Mike has even provided Kevin with two surrogate grandchildren.  Mike currently serves as a full time AGR Career Counselor in the Army reserves and recently moved to Northern California to spend some time with the Graves’ family.

Please join us in thanking SSG Garcia  for his service and for helping keep SPC Graves legacy alive!