Oakland A’s RP Brad Ziegler will be one of a variety of speakers at the 2nd annual Wounded Warrior Workforce Conference at the Sunnyvale Yahoo headquarters Friday February 11. The event is being sponsored by Project HIRED, a non profit organization that assists people with disabilities get back into the workforce.
Ziegler will speak to the audience about his service and dedication in working with our veterans and their families. This will not be the first time that the ace pitcher has spoken on behalf of the veteran community. This is a subject near and dear to his heart, and everyday of his life he emanates the honor and pride of the American spirit.
Late last year, Ziegler took time out to go over to the Middle East to spend time with the soldiers. He thought he could lend his support and a listening ear to those who wanted to talk about their experiences, as well as how it feels to be so far from home. He told MLB.com’s Jane Lee last year that, ” he understands his presence won’t make up for all that’s been lost by the soldiers — Christmas-tree shopping with the family, talk of school and work and dreams at the dinner table, birthdays and even births. He simply wants to lend them a boost of morale, whether that be through a game of catch or other activity.”
This is nothing new to Ziegler. Since 2008 he has been reaching out to our veterans and active soldiers and just last year created an organization called, ”Pastime for Patriots”, in which he launched last May at the A’s Armed Forces Day game against the Rays. His main goal was to purchase baseball tickets in Oakland for the families of troops serving overseas. This will give them a chance to get out for a few hours and watch a great game. He told Athletics Nation that ”taking a family of four to the ballpark can become a really expensive night and I wanted to try to help defray some of those costs and give those people a chance to do that.”
It’s not just entertaining the fans that Zeigler is interested in. He also wants to send out care packages which will include some sports memorabilia so that the troops can get a little taste of home and America’s favorite pastime. Their is also talk of student scholarships in the works for high school seniors who have lost a parent to war, regardless of when and what war that parent was killed in.
He is also not alone in his endeavorers to get this foundation off the ground. He has enlisted some musical artists and hopes that other teams with in the leagues will get involved and get the word out about how important it is to support our military, their families and the sacrifices they make for us on a daily basis.
If you would like more information on the Wounded Warrior Workforce event that will feature an array of noteworthy speakers including Jeremiah Ridgeway, Operation Enduring Freedom veteran and subject of a National Geographic Emmy®-nominated documentary, please visit the Project HIRED at http://www.projecthired.org/.