Wednesday, July 28, 2010

July Box Packing - Sending Out Special Thanks To WAAAM

With an awesome backdrop of military planes and vehicles, the Gorge Heroes Club members and community members came together for our July box packing at the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum here in Hood River, Oregon.

Sending our special thanks to WAAAM for letting us hold our community event there.  We appreciate your support for our organization and our Hometown Heroes.

Filling the boxes....

Volunteers signing cards and preparing our care package items to be packaged up.

Members and community visitor's signing cards.

Our awesome backdrop.....

Your GHC

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

A Salute To Our Troops

The Hood River County Fair Board & The Gorge Heroes Club Present…..

A Salute To Our Troops
Wed, July 28th - Opening Night Of The Hood River County Fair

Hood River County Fairgrounds - Odell, Oregon

Dinner is served at 6PM - Program begins at 7PM.  Dinner consists “Old Fashioned Can Corned Meal” that is cooked in milk cans!

Various Sausages- Corn- Cabbage- Potatoes - Carrots - Rolls - Desserts- Ryan's Juice-Punch

Meal Cost - $10.00/per person
Veteran’s - $5.00
Family - $25.00 with 4+ members

All proceeds from the event will be donated to the Gorge Heroes Club to be used for the purchase of care package items and shipping costs for deployed Columbia River Gorge troops.

(Fair entry for the evening is: $15/per car regardless of number in the car with 3 or more adults)

The Hood River Unit of the Oregon National Guard will have military vehicles on display and invite participants to ask questions about the use of the equipment and about their pending deployment to Iraq this September. The Hood River National Guard will also present National Colors and vocalist Perry Cole will perform patriotic selections along with other presentations and speakers for the event.    WAAAM- The Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum will have restore military vehicles present and if the wind cooperates, they will have a restored military plane flyover during the event.

Donation containers will be set up at the fair to collect boxed/canned food items for the Gorge Heroes Club to use for the monthly care packages GHC sends out.

This event offers the community the opportunity to meet our Home Town Heroes from the Gorge Region and thank them for their service.

The Gorge Heroes Club is a 501 (C) (3) non profit organization. For more information about GHC and a list of care package items, please visit our website at:

Special thanks also goes out to SFC Gary Norris from the Hood River Oregon National Guard Unit.  SFC Norris has been working with our committee for over three months to make sure the Oregon National Guard displays and vehicles are present for this event along with National Guard personnel.  We appreciate your dedication SFC Norris!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

July Troop Box Care Assembly

The July-August Troop Care Box Packing will take place Wednesday, July 21, 5:30PM at WAAAM - The Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum on Tucker Road in Hood River.  Entry will be made through the WESTERN entrance of the facility, not the main entrance. 

Our supplies are getting low, so please bring care package items if you can.  For a complete listing of suggested items, please click here.

These pictures are from our June troop box packing.... Thanks to all our members who take time from their busy lives to help send support to our Heroes!

Members signing cards..
Final touches....
Homemade cards from one of our members...

Thursday, July 15, 2010

GHC Welcomes Home Shawn Chance

GHC received an e-mail this morning letting us know that Shawn Chance, one of our Home Town Heroes is safely back on US soil.  Here is a portion of the e-mail of thanks we received from his Mother:

"Hello everyone. I thought I better take a few minutes to sit down and pass along the best news of the summer. Shawn is out of Afghanistan and back at Ft. Lewis! He finally arrived stateside early Saturday morning after several delays leaving Kandahar, three days in Manas, rerouting through Romania, eight hours in Maine and then to McCord AFB in Washington state.

Shawn looks, and says he feels amazingly good. I think he is too thin, but I guess that is to be expected. All of his mates looked thin as well. We were lucky to have been able to meet many of them. A  truly wonderful group of young men. The camaraderie and the connection they share is awesome and will probably last a lifetime, as it should. They are a tight group and it was easy to tell that they all have the up-most trust and respect for each other.

Shawn was back to work yesterday to start the debriefing process, physical, mental and dental exams as well as several adjusting classes and a finance class. The whole company is required to take a minimum of 20 days leave following all of the debriefing.

Many, many thanks to all of you, for anything and everything you have done this past year in support of him. All of the care packages, cards, letters, homemade goodies and crafts, artwork and pictures and anything else you may have sent his way is so gratefully appreciated. Mostly, all of my thanks for your prayers for him, for keeping him on your minds and close to your hearts this past year. It is such a blessing to have him home again.

Please continue to pray for all of our men and women in uniform, especially those that are in harms way and are far from their homes. May God bless all of you and God bless our troops".

GHC would like to thank Shawn for all his dedication and commitment.  We are proud of you and we are honored to support you!

With great pride,
Your GHC

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Navy Corpsman Jeremy Fogle Sends GHC Greetings From Itay!

This letter came in yesterday from one our Home Town Heroes - Jeremy Fogle, a Navy Corpsman, who has been stationed in Naples, Italy, for more than one year now. He is the son of Daryn and Sue Fogle of Hood River.

"Good Afternoon Everyone, or early morning I should say. I'm writing to give you an update on all things Navy serving here in Italy. Lots of things have been happening as of late, so I hope you enjoy the update.

Since writing you last, I have transferred departments. From working in the Emergency Room, I have been transferred to the Optometry/Ophthalmology clinics. My duties here range anywhere from front desk work, eye screenings, deployment packages, eye exams, and eye surgeries with the doctors. It's not nearly a broad a spectrum working with the patients in the ER, but I have more responsibility working here, being more one on one with the patients that I have a chance to interact with. I actually have enjoyed working with the doctors and learning all these new things I am putting in a special package to become an Optometry Technician, which would give me a specialty rating on top of being a Corpsman. I would be able to work in any Spectacle Processing lab, along with any Optometry Clinic at any Naval Hospital or Branch Medical Clinic around the World. This package should be entered into the system within the next few weeks, and I will find out if I have been accepted or denied. I would leave Naples around May 2011, report to Virginia where the school is for 8 months and then have the chance to re-pick orders. That is all speculation, seeing as if my package is accepted. If all goes well I would love to pick either Everett, Washington or Rota, Spain as my next duty station. Washington would be great so I could be close to home, but after traveling to Spain, it would be my ideal choice.

Besides working in the Hospital, I have been doing lots of traveling this last summer. Flights in Europe are ridiculously cheap on every airline so I have taken advantage of that to the fullest.

The first trip I have been on was to Barcelona, Spain. I fell in love with Spain when I went there, it was such a vibrant city, with the most elaborate architecture and some of the nicest people I have ever met. Las Ramblas was the main and busiest streets and one of the main attractions of this beautiful City.

The next trip I went on was to London. A friend and I went for a quick weekend trip to see Lady Gaga perform at the O2 Arena there, along with a little sightseeing. It was also a very beautiful city, and they have some of the best Fish and Chips that I have EVER tasted. I thought the best part of this trip was to be able to see "Big Ben" and take a trip on the London Eye, along with taking the infamous photo in the phone booth.

After this I took a trip to Ibiza, Spain. Ibiza is Europe's equivalent to our Spring Break hot spot of Cancun. They have the beaches, the clubs, and most important all the 20 something year olds to make this town into a crazy hot spot. It was right before pre season when I went, so I was able to keep my wallet in check but also have a relaxing but enjoyable time.

My next trip was to Malta for my 23rd Birthday. Malta is its own Country along with a couple other Islands that make up the Maltese Islands. It's a beautiful place, but also mostly for partying, another spring break hot spot, if you will. Which is the exact reason why I chose to spend it there with me and 3 other of my closest friends. We also went to visit the Island of Gozo which had some of the most crystal clear blue water I have ever seen. It was breath taking to be able to swim in such clean water.

I went to visit the Island of Ischia which is right off the Coast of Naples, Italy. It's about a 40 minute ferry to the Island and then from there it feels like you're in a completely different country. We visited Negumbo Spa which had about 12 different naturally heated pools, and a personal beach that you could use if the pools weren't for your liking.

In total we spent about 4 days there, which is just enough to make you forget about the hustle and bustle of the busy Naples city, and just enough to make you not want to return to that same city.

My most recent trip was to the city of Madrid, Spain. A group of 7 of us went for our 4th of July. We stayed right next to one of the main and busiest plaza, Plaza Mayor. I definitely recommend visiting this city if you ever get a chance. It's a little more industrialized than Barcelona, but to each their own. I visted the Real Madrid stadium where the ever so famous Cristiano Ronaldo plays. It's was pretty exciting to be in the city on Saturday the 3rd when Spain won their game against Germany. They also had some of the most beautiful Parks (parques) and gardens I have ever seen. The most epic thing was being able to witness a historical Bullfight. It was very gruesome, but a must see in my eyes.

I also have included some photos from the 112th Annual Corpsman Ball that was held at the Holiday Inn Resort here in Naples, Italy to commemorate the service of the most decorated Corps in the United States Navy. A local to Hood River Jillian Jones was my date, and it was an honor to have her attend and witness what the Hospital Corp stands represents.

I hope you enjoy these photos, and I will be sending you an update soon with more updates." -- V/R HN Fogle
Thanks V/R HN Fogle, we appreciate the updates!
Your GHC

Monday, July 5, 2010

Oregon National Guard & GHC July 4th Parade Pride

The Gorge Heroes Club would like to thank SFC Norris and unit members from the Hood River Oregon National Guard for letting our members ride on their vehicles during the Old Fashioned 4th of July Parade here in Hood River. Prior to the parade, the National Guard members could be seen outside detailing their pristine vehicles days in advance preparing for the parade. We thank you for your commitment to our nation and for helping GHC continually succeed in providing for our deployed Home Town heroes! Your help is GREATLY APPRECIATED!

Before thousands.....

The parade begins.... The Hood River Oregon National Guard members proudly present our Nation and State Colors. You could feel that overwhelming patriot pride and troop support throughout the entire route! The community cheered their "thanks" to our local Oregon National Guard members who will be deploying this September.

The route... GHC member Emily Hansen proudly displays her sign, "For your tomorrow they gave up their today"

Parade watchers and Veteran's cheer, salute and applaud as the Oregon National Guard Color Guard goes past the Hood River Oregon National Guard Armory and during the entire parade route....

Pre-Parade Highlights

GHC members hanging our banners on member Cameron Kiyokawa's truck all decked out in patriotic colors and flags.

GHC members (L to R) Rachal Hansen, Emily Hansen, Samantha, RaeLynn Ricarte and Stacy Methvin. GHC would like to thank Stacy and her daughter for the awesome handmade signs!

The patriotic and troop support line up! Oregon National Guard, GHC, Patriot Guard Riders and vintage restored military vehicles from WAAAM.
Members Sage and Sammy ready-to-roll!

Hood River Oregon National Guard members visiting with members of the Oregon Chapter of The Patriot Guard Riders.

Sending out special thanks to those Patriot Guard Riders who came and rode with us in the parade.

GHC members Cathy Hamada and her daughter Anna Thompson look on as the Oregon National Guard members prepare the troop carrier with our banners.

Anna's sign read, "Hood River Supports Our Troops"
Cathy's sign read, "Our Troops - Real American Idols"

An awesome fly over of the vintage planes from WAAAM before and during the parade from the Western Aero and Automobile Antique Museum here in Hood River. We would like to send out special thanks to the members of WAAAM for providing the flyover and the antique restored military vehicles that rode along with us during the parade. We appreciate your support.

Your GHC