Rick Sutter, Corporal, US Marine Corps, Director and President
I was born in Tacoma, Washington in 1955 and I was the youngest of three boys. My father worked in the dairy business and we raised livestock on our farm. My mother stayed home with us kids. I attended All Saints Catholic School in Puyallup and graduated from Puyallup High.
After graduating from high school I enlisted in the Marine Corps. While in the Marine Corps, my MOS was a Fire Direction Control person, but I moved in being an Forward Observer. I served in the tail-end of the Vietnam War, evacuating the south Vietnamese.
After coming home from my military service I worked in the construction trades, mainly finishing concrete. In 1985 I started my own company doing decorative concrete. I’m thirty years strong and don’t foresee an end soon.
In 2010 I volunteered for an organization that helps veterans and terminally ill young adults. After three years I felt that the organization wasn’t fulfilling their mission adequately, so I decided to start an organization strictly for combat injured, post-Vietnam, veterans. I wanted to share my vacation home in Idaho with these soldiers and also thank them for what they sacrificed for me.
I knew there wasn’t much of this done for veterans from the Vietnam era and those soldiers had to live with it. This is not only putting a big smile on these brave young men and women that have served and sacrificed for us, but as for myself as well. I couldn’t be rewarded more.
Thank you to all the donors, sponsors, and dedicated volunteers who help make Send-A-Vet a powerful resource for our nation’s combat-injured veterans. If you are interested in donating, please see our donation page.
MarkDaniel Brasel, Staff Sergeant, US Army, Director and Vice President
SSG Brasel served in the U.S. Army for a total of 12 years as an Infantry Airborne Ranger. During his service SSG Brasel deployed in response to both Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom, totaling 36 months of combat duty. While performing combat operations assigned to 3rd BN, 75th Ranger Regiment, he was involved in numerous combat missions in 2001 to 2003.
February 14, 2005, while serving in Iraq with the 2-14th Cavalry, 1st BDE, 25th Infantry Division, SSG Brasel suffered injuries caused by an enemy emplaced IED and an EFP while on patrol with his platoon in Tala Far. His injuries, caused by shrapnel and the blast, included wounds to the face and eyes with loss of consciousness. The Stryker vehicle was destroyed and SSG Brasel found himself trapped inside its hatch. SSG Brasel was treated for his injuries at the Tala Far Combat Support Hospital returning to duty two months later as Sniper Team Section Sergeant. While serving in this position at a Command Operation Post, on April 7, 2005, SSG Brasel sustained severe trauma from a white phosphorous mortar round. The round impacted five feet away embedding shrapnel and white phosphorous into both of his legs and groins. On October 19, 2007, SSG Brasel was targeted by a sniper in Sadar City and subsequently struck by a round in the back plate of his body armor. The impact knocked him to the ground; being the warrior he is, SSG Brasel quickly regained his footing and returned fire.
During his combat service, SSG Brasel suffered multiple concussions spanning over 30 IED’s, two VBED’s, RPG, direct fire, and indirect fire. He is currently being treated for MTBI from the blasts, multiple shrapnel wounds. SSG Brasel also continues treatments for white phosphorous injuries.
During SSG Brasel’s last assignment he was stationed at the U.S. Army Survival, Evasion, Resistance, and Escape (SERE) Level C School, Fort Rucker, Alabama where he serving as an instructor. His awards and decorations include:
He is currently medically retired living in Elma, Washington with his wife Arielle and stepdaughter Bentley Brown. He volunteers his time to the VFW and Send-A-Vet Foundation. He helps combat veterans participate in outdoor activities like fishing, hunting, rafting, and relaxing.
Betty Lehman, SFC, 42AF5, 492nd Civil Affairs Battalion, Secretary
Correctional Officer II, Field Training Officer, Work Crew Supervisor, Arizona Department of Corrections. Supervise up to 400 inmates, conduct search and seizure, “pat search” inmates, search bags and packages, conduct 100% face to ID checks. Assure that all cell doors, office doors, gates and fences are secure. Account for all equipment that can become potential weapons as well as kitchen supplies. Escort prisoners to and from hospitals, funerals and courts. Field Training Officer’s, Train Cadets and Correctional Officers in their daily duties, Supervise Inmate Work Crews on the prison grounds.
While a part of the Warrior Transition Battalion, FT Lewis, WA, I was able to attend my first event with Send-A-VET. My first event was the banquet/auction in 2013. At that auction, I won a whitetail hunting trip with Southern Oregon Outfitters, Glide, OR. I did get my first buck estimated at 60 pounds, had a head mount made; after my hunt, I was able to go fishing where I caught two Chinook Salmon.
In 2015, I went to Idaho with Send-A-VET on a bear hunt. That was the first time I had ever seen a black bear in the wild. Shot my first bear (female) estimated at about 200 pounds. Had a rug made out of the hide.
Decorations, Service Medals and Badge: Iraq Campaign Medal W/FOUR CAMPAIGN STARS
Patrice White, Staff Sergeant, US Army, Treasurer
SSG White started his military career in 1986 -1990 in the U.S. Marine Corps. During this time he served with 3rd BN 6th Marines 2nd Mar. Div., and 2nd Force Reconnaissance Co. 2nd SRI Group. SSG White re-entered military service in 1999, where he was assigned to 1/5 Infantry, 1st BDE 25th Infantry Division in Ft. Lewis, Washington. He then deployed with A Co. 1/5 Infantry in 2004 to Iraq as a weapons squad leader.
While conducting a patrol in Mozul, SSG White’s Stryker was struck by and SVBIED. SSG White temporarily lost consciousness after the SVBIED detonated.
SSG White went on to deploy with A Troop 1/2 Stryker Cavalry Regiment in 2007to Sadre City, where he served as a squad leader and later as member of a MiTT Team. SSG White was then assigned to 2/357th Infantry, 1st Army as an Observer Controller, where he deployed as part of the NATO Training Mission Afghanistan in 2010.
SSG White has a total of 31 months of combat deployments and retired July 2015. His awards and decorations include:
SSG White retired to Lacey, Washington in 2014 and started working with Send-A-Vet Foundation after going on a trip of his own in early 2014.
Jaremy Day, Civilian, Director and Board member in Charge of Marketing, Donations, and Sponsorship
Jaremy Day was born and raised in Twin Falls, Idaho. He has been married to his lovely wife for over 20 years and has three wonderful children. His hobbies include camping, hunting, and fishing. Although Jaremy never enlisted in the military, he has immense respect for the men and women who have dedicated their time and lives to serve and protect God’s greatest nation.
“I have always had an inner desire to support our veterans. It was wasn’t until I went to the Send-A-Vet Foundation Banquet Dinner in March of 2015 that it came clear that joining this Foundation would allow me the opportunity to support those who have dedicated everything to protect the United States of America.”
Jaremy contacted MarkDaniel shortly after the 2015 banquet wondering if there is anything he could offer to help the Foundation’s cause. Because of Jaremy’s background in business and sales it only felt right to elect him as the Foundations Marketing and Donations Director.
“I look forward to seeing the lives of combat wounded veterans changed through this wonderful foundation.”
Bill Bostwick, Board Member
I was born and raised in Puyallup, WA and lived here most of my life. After graduating from Puyallup High School, I became a union apprentice pipefitter out of Local #82.
I have been a pipefitter ever since. I became involved with the Send-A-Vet Foundation after attending the 2015 Annual Charity Banquet. Knowing Ricky Sutter most of my life, I asked if he needed me to do anything to help. His reply– “You God Damn Rights We Can Use Some Help”! I knew right then I was in it for life. From there, I have since taken a double amputee to Alaska fishing and am looking forward to bringing many more up there. Until you have made a commitment like this, you don’t know what it means to everyone involved and the comfort you gain spiritually. I am looking forward to many adventures on the road ahead and hopefully there will be no roadblocks to deal with. Thank You