Chicago News

'Warrior Wishes' make war vets special guests at Bears game

Friday, October 11, 2013

The Bears play the New York Giants Thursday night at Soldier Field and thanks to a group called Warrior Wishes, there will be some very special guests in the stands.

Bears fans arrived at the big game Thursday evening and among those in the stands are three former military members whose service and sacrifice are being honored.

For Sergeant Cameron Crouch, Corporal Noah Currier and Specialist Tim Morehouse Thursday is more than about football.

"Glad to be in The United States. Glad to live where I do, be a Bears fan on top of it," Cpl. Currier said.

"It's pretty amazing that you see how much the community cares," said Spc. Morehouse.

These Iraq War veterans are attending Thursday night's Bears game, thanks to Craig and Matt Steichen of Bartlett, a father and son on a mission to honor those who serve.

"They're out enjoying life, and that's the goal, just to get them out and give them a day they'll never forget," Matt Steichen said.

It all began last year when the Steichens had the idea to take wounded vets to football games at all 32 NFL stadiums.

It was only supposed to be for one season, but with the help of sponsors, including "Iron Mike" Ditka, they formed a non-profit called operation Warrior Wishes, with the goal of bringing more vets to games.

"If we can give a thousand guys a year an experience like we're going to give Cameron and Tim and Noah today, it's way worth it," Matt Steichen said.

Last month, the Steichens brought 11 wounded vets to the Patriots-Jets game in Massachusetts and paired them with victims of the Boston Marathon bombing, who'd also had limbs amputated.

Before Thursday's tailgate, Sgt. Crouch, who lost both legs in Iraq, was given a tour of Wrigley Field, as well a surprise, his name in lights on the marquee.

"It does just make it all fade into the background for at least a little bit and make you forget all the bad things and just remember the good parts of life," Sgt. Crouch said.

"There's no better feeling than to just sit there and watch them get an experience of a lifetime," said Steichen.

Additional information:
http://operationwarriorwishes.org/

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