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Author: Joe Public

Bear Bait Ultras donate $6500 to Fisher House

For their second year in a row, this group of dedicated athletes and military supporters have hosted a successful event and donated proceeds to your  local Fisher House.  Next year’s is already on the schedule, register early, it’s fun and for a great cause. Dan, Bo and Dalia present the check to Teresa Halverson.

Exchange Club of Niceville gives $800 to Fisher House from 3rd Annual Field of Valor

Thanks once again for the Exchange Club of Niceville hosting the 3rd Annual Field of Valor to honor our fallen. Proceeds from this event benefited our Fisher House on Eglin AFB to bless military families during a medical event. 4th Annual Field of Valor is on the calendar, September 9 – 18, 2017 – plan to attend. Seeing the flags waving in the field is a somber reminder that freedom isn’t free. Thank a veteran and their family.  Thanks Paul McShane for your leadership.

Niceville Valparaiso Chamber hosts Sequins and Suits – gives Fisher House $1575

Grateful for the Niceville Valparaiso Chamber of Commerce for their support of Fisher House – Sequins and Suits produced $1575 for our mission. Thanks to volunteers, Donna Chesher, Michele Green, and David and Diane Walbeck. Board members Jim Yurack, Gordy Fornell, Shirley Pigott and Teresa Halverson are pictured here with our friends from the chamber, along with Mia Hughes, Administrative Director.

Emerald Coast Regional Mustang Club donates $700 to Fisher House

Community Ambassadors David and Diane Walbeck and Sheila and Wayne Williams, along with Administrative Director Mia Hughes received $700 from the Emerald Coast Regional Mustang Club last Thursday evening.

The Emerald Coast Regional Mustang Club was created in 1987 by four local Mustang enthusiasts as an informal social group. The club has steadily grown over the years and was officially recognized and adopted as a regional group by the Mustang Club of America in 1995. All generations of Mustangs are represented in the club. Our members also cover several generations, yet share a common love for the Mustang car, it’s enjoyment, preservation, and history.

The Emerald Coast Regional Mustang Club actively supports several charity organizations in the local area; sponsor an annual car show each year and participate in other local charity events as a means to collect funds for these causes.

Monthly meetings are held on the first Thursday of each month at The Golden Corral in Fort Walton Beach. Social hour starts at 6PM and the meeting begins at 7 PM.We hold regular (at least once per month) “Social Gatherings and/or Fun Runs” to area attractions.

Schumacher Fine Arts donates $1,240 to Fisher House

Kathy Schumacher, gifted artist of Schumacher Fine Art, recently presented a $1,240 donation to Fisher House of the Coast, Inc. from her Paint the Coast instructional class held September 29 at Superior Residences in Niceville, co-host along with The Manor at Blue Water Bay.  Paint the Coast was founded by award winning palette knife artist, Kathy Schumacher. Kathy felt a desire to share her love of art with others by creating compositions that even beginning painters can create successfully. Her gallery can be viewed at

The check was presented to Administrative Director, Mia Hughes. Paint the Coast is a creative business specializing in teaching beginning artists basic painting techniques in a casual, relaxed environment. Students are provided all supplies and will finish their masterpiece in one 2-3 hour session. Students need only to show up with a smile and wearing clothes that are worthy of getting dirty.

Currently, classes are being held at The Pancakery in Destin, Florida at Café Liquid in Niceville, FL and at the American Legion Post 75 in Crestview Florida. Private parties are available upon request.


Chain of Love

A few months ago, I posted a story in our monthly newsletter about the chain of love and it’s definition of paying it forward randomly – without knowledge of the effect one single act could have in the life of another at some point in the future.

This time of year, I love visiting the post office.  Let me correct that, any time of the year I love visiting the post office.  These visits yield unexpected fruit from kind strangers and great friends alike who support our efforts to provide comfort to military families facing a medical event. Some are anonymous or wish to remain so, some contributions are made in honor and memory of loved ones, community and military leaders, some include notes and many do not.  Just a simple “thanks for what you do.”  But it’s not about what we do, it’s really about what you do, the contributor who enables our work.  We lovingly call you “enablers” in a most positive way.

On my visit the first Tuesday of the new year, there was a typed letter that began, “Hey, Hope you are having a wonderful and blessed holiday season.” As you read on, you can tell it is likely enclosed as the family newsletter inside a Christmas card.  In the first paragraph, a description is made of the Fisher House mission, with an email link to the website.  In the second paragraph is where the chill bumps start due to the humanity that unfolds.  The chain of love……

12 years ago an 8th grader working on a project wants to collect items for his newly formed “organization”, appropriately named and not shared to protect the privacy of the persons in this story.  It appears he makes this a family affair as many middle school projects become.  He visits local businesses and amasses a collection of items, delivers them to a Fisher House at an Army/AFB near where he was raised, meets parents of sons and daughters returning from Iraq, guests in the home.  A home that is described as “full of love and compassion for those who needed that love the most.”  All excerpts from the letter.

The third paragraph fasts forward to December of 2016 when that same 8th grader, now a member of the USAF is medivac’d to our hospital on Eglin for tests and treatment of a mystery illness, contracted during a recent deployment to a foreign soil in defense of our great nation.  This airman’s father stayed in our home the letter says.  I am almost weeping as I type to describe in his words the effect of the care and warmth that was provided this family in our home on Eglin.  This father shared this story with his friends and family in their Christmas card, likely, and the recipient sent the letter to us with a very generous check enclosed.

Because of you, we were able to bless this family who so many years ago blessed other families, without expectation.  Sharing their story with friends, the blessing continued.  How can you make a difference in the life of another person today?  Some simple random act of kindness goes a long way.  To quote Charlie Daniels, “let’s make the day count.”

9th Annual Helping Heroes Fisher House Gala Photos

Kathy Schumacher
Kathy Schumacher
Kathy Schumacher
Kathy Schumacher
Art by Kathy Schumacher
Pup and Sue Nelson, Cubs Fans
Pup and Sue Nelson
Peter Bos
Traci Green and Ed Espinoza
Tall Cotton Band
Traci Green
Traci Green, Carolyn and Ed Espinoza
Donna Riemer
JR McDonald and wife Melissa
Doug and Judy Brock, Brock Lawn and Pest – my brother!
Gail Allen – first person to buy a ticket to the Gala
Preston and Erica Jackson, Mia Hughes Rangers
Preston and Erica Jackson, Matt and Ashley Royalty, Mia Hughes
JR and Melissa McDonald, Maria McLean
Brad and Dawna Webb, Brooke McLean
Peter Bos
Traci Green
Traci Green wearing the Boeing Sash
Traci Green
Krista and Kathy Schumacher, mother daughter looks like sisters with American Airman
Trec and Chedbob Chedister
Amy Loch giving the peace sign
Jim Yurack and Amy Loch
Peter Bos and Ted Corcoran
Lovely Erin
Diane Walbeck is such a social butterfly!
Modern Quilt Guild Wonky Houses
Peter Bos, Diane Walbeck and Gordy Fornell
Diane Walbeck promotes EOD Fudge – thanks Aaron Hale and McKayla Tracy
Wine Wheel by Breakthru Beverage
Ted Corcoran
Diane Walbeck shows You Can’t Ride in my Little Red Wagon donated by Peaden Brothers Distillery
American Flag
Robb Rieney wins a golden ticket
Jim Yurack wins a golden ticket
Omar and Judy Wiseman win a golden ticket
Ted Corcoran, FWB Chamber of Commerce CEO/President, Celebrity Auctioneer, President Teresa Halverson and Mia Hughes
Mia Hughes, Peter Bos, Master of Ceremonies, and President Teresa Halverson
Ed Hubbard, our featured speaker
Ed Hubbard
Ed Hubbard
Ed Hubbard and Ted Corcoran
Ted Corcoran
Ed Hubbard and Peter Bos
2016 Gala Sponsors