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Game 22 – Warrior Wishes Come True At The Colts Game!


My dad spent a couple of extra of nights in Nashville after making Warrior Wishes come true at the Titans game, which was our 21st game of the season.  

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On Saturday night he took an overnight $1 megabus from Nashville to Indianapolis.  He arrived at 3am & was shocked to see the streets filled with Ghosts, Goblins, monsters and zombies.  He said it was like being in an episode of “The Walking Dead.”  He quickly realized that everyone was celebrating Halloween.  The partygoers kept my dad awake, the only problem is he could not get a seat at the 24 hour Steak & Shake he usually “sleeps at…”


As the sun began to rise, the crowds got smaller and my dad was able to get a seat to eat a little breakfast. Then he headed over to Crown Plaza hotel near the stadium to use their computer, and work on setting up next weeks games in Baltimore, Pittsburgh & at the Meadowlands for the New York Giants.

Over the past 4 years we have made a lot of memories making Warrior Wishes come true at Colts games!

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My dad eventually made his way over to the Old Spaghetti Factory at 11am where he met up with Army Spc Christopher Green, Marine Michael Mertz & their loved ones.  


SPC Green and his wife were the first to arrive.  Chris himself has nominated a couple of his battle buddies for a warrior wish in the past, Sgt Geiger who we hosted in Jacksonville and SSG Williams in Miami.  Since they were a few minutes early, it gave us the chance to get to know each other a little but before the other warrior arrived.  

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We surprised our second guest, Navy Corpsman and Marine Michael Mertz with  a little help from our friend.  Turns out our Board Member, and Marine, Manny Gonzalez Knows him.  So Manny, knowing Mertz was a huge Colts fan, invited the Mertz family to dinner and Fright Fest in Illinois, and  surprised them with the Warrior Wishes Colts experience!  

Mike and his wife arrived about 20 minutes after SPC Green and were still talking about the surprise – his wife Lisa did a great job of setting it up, while keeping surprise intact.  Manny, our Board Member, did great job of “delivering” the surprise. We spent the next hour enjoying a delicious lunch thanks to The Old Spaghetti Factory & got to know all 4 of our new friends.  Before heading over to the stadium for the game, my dad snapped a few photos, gave them their New Era Caps and then escorted them 3 blocks over to the stadium.


Before making their way inside, they walked around in “Touchdown Town”- a plaza full of Colts related games and activities.  


The Colts were hosting the Chiefs today.  When he saw that he came to the realization that this was his 3rd straight Chiefs game!  Two weeks ago he saw them kickoff agains the Raiders in Oakland, last week he made Warrior Wishes come true in KC & today they are the Colts opponent. 


He must be their good luck charm because he has seen them win every game… unfortunately for the Warriors, the Chiefs dominated the Colts and won 30-14. 


After the game, my dad walked everyone back to their cars, said goodbyes and hopped on the 7:15pm $1 megabus to get home by Midnight.


Operation Warrior Wishes would like to thank Josh & Rebecca at Old Spaghetti Factory for the Pre Game Meal, New Era Cap for providing the Colts Caps & Chive Charities for the KCCO T-Shirts, as well as their continued support of our Warrior Wishes mission.  

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Most importantly we want to take a minute to recognize Army SPC Chris Green and Navy Corpsman Michael Mertz for their service to our country, and their wives for their unwavering support of their heroes.  It’s appreciated, has not gone unnoticed & will never be forgotten!

My dad has been on the road since Wednesday & definitely looking forward to coming home to catch up with the family & get some rest. Thankfully he has an easy day tomorrow as he will be home making Warrior Wishes come true at Soldier Field.  Stay tuned for more details.




Michael entered the Navy in 1991, serving 20 years as a Hospital Corpsman. In those 20 years he served half his time with the Marines as their “Doc”. He served in two wars, Afghanistan in 2001-2002 and Iraq in 2003-2004. He also traveled with his Marines to places such as Thailand and Japan. He finished his final years of service at Great Lakes Naval Academy as in instructor in North Chicago, IL. He is a beloved husband, father, son and friend; a man with much character and is always willing to help others before himself. He misses his Marines more than anything since retiring, but now he can help serve other veterans with his new job with the VA at Ft. Benjamin Harrison. After 25 years being away, Michael has finally “come home” after buying his first home in Greenwood, IN. He has a deep love of Star Wars, Yoda being his favorite character of all. He loves to game online and watch movies in his newly furnished Star Wars man-cave.

Don’t forget to nominate your hero for an upcoming game on our 2016 “All32in17” Mission!

2016 ALL32IN17 Schedule

Facebook “Operation Warrior Wishes”

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Contact Craig for more information about the mission (630) 339-6714

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Game 12 – Warrior Wishes Come True At The Vikings New Stadium!

After making warrior wishes come true at the Texans game & a great night of catching up with old friends, Manny picked my dad up on his way to the airport.


They both had early morning flights.  Manny was headed back home to Chicago and my dad took off to Minnesota to make more Warrior Wishes come true at the Monday night Vikings game.  


Over the past 4 years we have made some incredible memories making Warrior Wishes come true at the Metrodome & TCF stadium in Minnesota.

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My dad has made warrior wishes come true at all 32 NFL stadiums every year for the past 4 years in a row.  However, this was the first time we ever made Warrior Wishes come true at the brand new U.S. Bank Stadium.


As you can imagine, this new billion dollar stadium is an incredible state of the art facility.  Located in downtown Minneapolis, US Bank Stadium is a bold and iconic building. The structure is like no-other in the NFL. It features a fixed, slanted roof that is 60% transparent allowing natural light to filter inside giving it an outdoor feel. Featuring a black zinc facade, the majority of fans enter the stadium through the west side, known as the Medtronic Plaza, a three-acre gateway to the stadium that contains one of the most iconic features at US Bank Stadium, a 160 foot long legacy Vikings ship. Modeled after an ancient Viking’s ship, it features a 2,000 square foot curved LED videoboard that serves as the ships 55 foot tall sail. The plaza provides a great gathering spot for fans before and after games. 


My dad arrived in Minneapolis at around noon and spent the first hour he was there capturing pictures of the outside of the gorgeous new stadium.  


He also walked around the stadium to get familiar with the surrounding area and found the tailgate lot where they planned to hang out with the Warriors & the “VWO” (Viking World Order) before the game.


We were honored to be hosting Air Force Sgt Jeremy Walker, who was one of the Warriors we hosted in 2012, and his wife Stephanie who also served in the Air Force!  Stephanie is still in the Guard today.  

My dad met up with the Walkers for dinner before the game thanks to Chris and Steve at The Old Spaghetti Factory.  They were excited to host the warriors!  


My dad enjoyed catching up with Jeremy & getting to know Stephanie over dinner.  They really enjoyed The ambiance & delicious food at the Spaghetti factory.  The 2 Air Force warriors got to pick out their new Vikings caps before heading over to the stadium, thanks to our friends at New Era.  


As they headed over to the stadium, Stephanie, told my dad that Jeremy still talks about the game we hosted him at back in 2012.  It was a game that we will never forget either.  In 2012, Jeremy was treated to field passes & one of the coaches tossed him a game ball to take home with him.  It was truly a once in a lifetime experience!


Unfortunately, My dad informed him, and apologized, that this time won’t be like the first experience as we were unable to get field passes and ticket prices were extremely expensive due to the new stadium & the Vikings being undefeated. Nonetheless, my dad was still determined to show them a great time!


Before heading inside the new stadium, my dad introduced the Warriors to our friend “Diggs” from the VWO.  The Viking World Order is one of the most amazing group of fans in the NFL!  From face paint to costumes, the VWO goes all out!  Jeremy & Stephanie had such a good time meeting everyone and just hanging out, that they were asking Diggs and other Superfans how they could join Viking World Order and tailgate every week going forward!  


This is one of the things we like most about our program – it introduces and matches up local veterans with each other and with various contacts for team, restaurants , players etc so that they can do other things in future when we are not here.  It’s all about working together to show each warrior that their service & sacrifices are appreciated!  We like to think we are sometimes the conduit.

A half hour before game time my dad snapped a few pics in front of the stadium and explored the inside as much as they could before kickoff. 


The Vikings remained undefeated as they gave Jeremy & Stephanie plenty to cheer about.  They dominated the Giants and won the game by the score of 24-10.  

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After the game my dad thanked the Walkers one last time for their service & walked a few blocks to catch his overnight $1 Megabus back to Chicago & will meet his new grand daughter for the first time when he arrives home!  

Operation Warrior Wishes would like to thank Chris and Steve at Old Spaghetti Factory for dinner, the VWO for providing an awesome tailgate experience and New Era Cap for the Vikings caps 

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Last but certainly not least, we want to thank Air Force Warriors , Jeremy and Stephanie Walker for their service & dedication to our country!

My dad will be back in action on Thursday making Warrior Wishes come true in San Francisco!  Stay Tuned for more details & photos of Baby Quinn!




Jeremy Walker has served from 2002-2009 on Active Duty Air Force stationed at Fairchild AFB, WA. He deployed to Iraq in 2004 and Afghanistan in 2007 driving convoys. On his deployment to Afghanistan he received a purple heart for his injuries.

Stephanie Walker has served from 2005-present on Active Duty Air Force stationed at Fairchild AFB, WA and Luke AFB, AZ. She is currently serving in the Minnesota Air National Guard. She deployed to Kuwait and Qatar in 2008 and UAE in 2010 managing the vehicle fleet.

2016 ALL32IN17 Schedule

Facebook “Operation Warrior Wishes”

Twitter “@WarriorWishes”

Instagram “@WarriorWishes

Contact Craig for more information about the mission (630) 339-6714