The US Census board writes: The number of veterans with a service-connected disability rating in 2014. Of this number, 1.1 million had a rating of 70 percent or higher. A “service-connected” disability is one that was a result of a disease or injury incurred or aggravated during active military service (census.gov 2015). Many of these vets suffer from “the gap” between the vets medical discharge, and when their VA benefits kick in. While in that gap these men and women have no funds to pay their bills, buy groceries, medicine, and housing.
This number was way too high for KCXW President Jordan (Smiley) Rogers. So, on February 12, 2017 he opened his organization to sponsor an event: Wrestling for Vets, raising funds for the Semper Fi Fund, an organization dedicated to helping disabled veterans, from all branches of service, with their day to day expenses. The proceeds of the event, and raffle, went directly to the Semper Fi Fund.
Wrestlers considered donated time to compete at this event an honor
I had an opportunity to speak with Shannon Reed, a KCXW Wrestler, backstage, about the event. He said “It was an honor to participate in this cause” and marveled at the turn out and support the event garnered.
Wrestler Hollis Giroux mentioned its always great to wrestle at an event, but this one was “Different” and “Special”.
Bill Cravens, also known as The Sarge, was a recipient of help from the Semper Fi Fund due to a debilitating injury. He stated he was unable to work due to a shoulder injury and, because of a 5-month gap between his injury and his disability benefits, his wife and family were in danger of losing their home. The Semper Fi Fund not only caught his family’s finances up, they also paid ahead to give them some breathing room.
Cravens, part of a MediVac unit in the US Army, saw tonight’s event to give back, donate to, and promote the armed forces charity.
President Jordan (Smiley) Rogers speaks PTSD, Being a Disabled Vet, and Wrestling giving him a mission.
“It’s healing me too, to do this kind of event.” He said. Jordan Rogers spoke frankly about his PTSD and service injury and wants to get his message out to other vets.
“It's ok to get help.” He said. He continued speaking about the science of EMDR therapy and its positive results on his illness.
“Everything I am doing is therapy.” He said, “this event is therapy! Wrestling is therapy. It’s a way for me to get out and do something and be proactive. It is my mission. I care about KCXW and the Xtreme Wrestling Center as much as I care about anything. It is an outlet to channel my focus and have a mission.”
When I asked about the turn-out he said: “It’s awesome! It’s the biggest crowd we’ve had since we’ve been at the Alamo Draft house!”
He chose the Semper Fi Fund for the event because it is “incredibly reputable and reaches out to all vets from all branches of the armed forces”. Rogers, a Purple Heart recipient and US Marine veteran, wants to help other veterans get to the point he is in recovery, and help them become successful in life.
The show was a success. KCXW donated the proceeds of the event to the Semper Fi fund.on Febuary 17th.
Information for the Semper Fi fund can be found by clicking here.
KCXW continues to perform at the Alamo Draft House on Second Sundays of each month. The next event is Unleashed ’17 on March 12th at 6:00 p.m.
Editors Note: What happens when your journalist doesn't have a working SD card for his camera? You guys get phone pics.