Spirit of Liberty Foundation Reflections
December 31, 2015
Spirit of Liberty Foundation Reflections
2015 was another emotionally packed year for the Spirit of Liberty. As you can imagine, we had our fair share of ups and downs.
The Spirit of Liberty Foundation’s America’s Freedom Bell continued to touch the hearts and minds of our fellow Americans, especially those who continue to support our Armed Forces in the past, present, and future.
Among the Bell’s 2015 highlights:
On June 14th, it was the centerpiece at Independence Hall to celebrate Flag Day. Not only does it commemorate the adoption of our American flag, it’s the day when the U.S. Army was established and when the Freedom Bell was first unveiled to the world.
On May 29th, the Bell had a Place of Honor at the Memorial Day Ceremonies in Washington D.C. It took place inside the World War II Memorial on the National Mall. This ceremony also celebrated the 70th Anniversary of the end of World War II.
On July 27th, It was the centerpiece of the Korean War Memorial’s 62nd anniversary of the Armistice Day Commemoration, as well as the 20th dedication of the Korean War Memorial. Ahn Ho-young, Ambassador of South Korea, and Kim Moo-sung, Leader of the Saenuri Party in South Korea, joined American and Korean veterans in the ringing the Bell.
On November 11th, the Bell was once again part of the National Veterans Day Ceremony at the Arlington National Cemetery. At the event, President Barack Obama laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Richard Rovsek, the Spirit of Liberty Foundation’s Chairman, attended the White House for the Veterans Day Breakfast and was part of the President’s group who attended the ceremony.
The year ended for us on December 7th, with the Freedom Bell at the Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day ceremonies. Pearl Harbor survivor, CSM USN Delton E. Waling) rang the Bell with thousands.
Over 2.5 million Americans have rang America’s Freedom Bell
Because of its popularity, we’ve been invited to have the Freedom Bell bell in to be part of the Normandy D-Day Ceremony for 2016. Our hope is that we’ll procure a sponsorship in order in time do this event.
American Warrior Brands
Unfortunately a major downside we experienced this year was with American Warrior Brands’ retail launch. Initially, it was planned that the AWB’s products were going to be in 100 stores on the West Coast with Haggen’s grocery stores. Needless to say, we ran into a costly and time-consuming situation when that chain filed for bankruptcy. Discussions are being made with other chains to do a Spring/Summer launch. We will keep you informed of future updates.
Foundation’s First Armed Forces Ornament
On the bright side, the Foundation created and tested our first official Armed Forces Ornament that carries the Official Emblems for each military branch of our Armed Forces.
As part of the initial launch, these ornaments have been engraved with the names of the living Medal of Honor Recipients. Additionally, these ornaments will be presented to them by the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation.
Also as part of the launch, we have established a relationship with the Department of Veteran Affairs. For every ornament sold in retail, one will be given to a Veteran – and there at least 50,000 veterans who reside at homes that are part of Veteran Affairs.
With that being said, we hope that we can count on your support by purchasing these ornaments. They are an excellent display to have at home, in your office, or any holiday for that matter! To order, here is the link to our site.
Operation Christmas Miracle – The Believe in Santa Tour
We completed our 15th annual Operation Christmas Miracle – The Believe in Santa Tour with a visit to our troops in Germany. This includes a visit to the Landstuhl Military Hospital with America’s Santa, who came bearing gifts for everyone. Some of which were footballs that were personally signed by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
One of the most emotional moments we had on the trip was when America’s read the original “Twas the night before Christmas” to our troops, where you can see tears streaming on some of their faces. According to them, it made them think of home for a few moments.
We also made a very special stop in Paris, to support are allies from abroad. With the help of Jane Hartley, the American Ambassador to France, we visited the sites of carnage the November 13th tragedy left behind, where 129 people were killed by terrorists. At each these sites, we laid a patriotic wreath that was handcrafted by our veterans. This wouldn’t have been possible without your help. This of course includes our patriotic supporters, sponsors, and organizations.
For that, we thank you and hope to have your continued support for our endeavors for the future.
If you haven’t had that opportunity, don’t hesitate to make a difference and donate to a great cause.
Without further ado, God Bless America and our Armed Forces