Wounded warriors at Walter Reed treated to afternoon with Washington Redskins Alumni

Lauren Warner
November 17, 2018 - 7:20 pm

Photo courtesy of Lauren Warner

A group of 120 Super Bowl ring-owners, MVP's, and their family members spent their Saturday putting together 1,000 care packages for deploying soldiers. In addition, the standard items, each package includes a hand-written note, and a number of autographs, from Redskins alumni.

The event was part of the Redskins Alumni Weekend. It brought together alumni and service members and their families for a unique afternoon at the USO Warrior Family Center at Walter Reed Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland.  

"Every year the Redskins host an alumni weekend and part of that revolves around a community service project," explains Jane Rodgers, Executive Director of the Redskins Charitable Foundation. "We brought many of the alumni and their families along to the USO today and we want to make sure they know we appreciate them."

Photo courtesy of Redskins Community

Attending the luncheon were alumni Mark Rippon, Ken Harvey, and Joe Jacobi; who spent their time taking pictures, sharing stories and their Super Bowl rings with service members and their children. 

"People always say 'athletes are supposed to give back.' I disagree with that," explains Harvey, a four-time Pro-Bowl Linebacker. "We are all human beings and we should all give back. We're here, able to embody the Redskins and show that as good as we are on the field, we're also great on the field of life."

Photo courtesy of Lauren Warner

Photo courtesy of Redskins Community

"This is just our way of saying 'thank you for your service'," says Rodgers. "Whether you play football or are in the service, we all want to connect. What brings it all home is the level of understanding that's created--I watched Joe Jacobi and his daughter have a conversation with a single amputee, he walked them through using the prosthetic. Those moments and connections, that's what this is all about."

Photo courtesy of Lauren Warner

During lunch, Larry Michael, the Voice of the Washington Redskins, hosted a Chalk Talk. Alumni answered questions about the game Sunday, opinions on current players and, most importantly, who their favorite Redskin (other than themselves) happens to be. 

Photo courtesy of Lauren Warner

In conjunction with Redskins Salute, the Redskins Charitable Foundation hosts a number of community service projects throughout the D.C. Metro area focused around the Redskins Salute to Service.

"I've been here a little over a year, and the Redskins have come out for a number of different events," says Midge Matlock-Williams, USO Bethesda Center Coordinator. "This is the first time that the Charitable Foundation as a group has come in my time here. We really appreciate it-- it brings the service members out from the stress of everyday life and there's nothing better for them."

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