August 2016 Newsletter


AUGUST 12th12th -Freedom Friday Summer Shandy “COOL OFF”

SEPTEMBER 9th – Freedom Friday Dove Hunters “Season Kick-Off”
10th – Army Echo Company Spiritual Retreat
11th – 328th Battalion Co Spiritual Retreat
23rd-24th Jimmy Nance Retreat

OCTOBER 14th – Freedom Friday Halloween “Wine Tasting”
29th – Chaplain 50th Birthday Day

NOVEMBER 11th Freedom Friday Veterans Day –“Warrior Beer Tasting”
24th – Thanksgiving – Soldier Open House

DECEMBER 9th – Freedom Friday “Country Christmas Wine Tasting”
24th – Christmas Eve
25th – Christmas Day

Summer is here and time to cool off with $1.75 Summer Shandy this coming August 12th, FREEDOM FRIDAY.  Join us in the coldest bar in TEXAS at a constant 70 degrees or you can visit our wine cellar and choose from 28 different wines in an ice cold 58 degrees!!  Bring the family, friends, and your guitar for a South Texas summer night on Lake Placid.

The Guadalupe Valley Young Marines has been a part of the SS American Memorial since the building dedication in 2014.  This is a tremendous organization (not-for-profit) that instills values to youth participants.

The Young Marines strengthens the lives of America’s youth by teaching the importance of self-confidence, academic achievement, honoring our veterans, good citizenship, community service, and living a healthy, drug-free lifestyle. The Young Marines promotes the mental, moral, and physical development of its members. The program focuses on character building and leadership and promotes a lifestyle that is conducive to being productive members of society.

This year they are raising $18,890.00 to travel to Pearl Harbor Hawaii to participate in the 75th anniversary parade commemorating December 7th, 1941.  Let’s help shape these youth’s lives by being part of HISTORY!  They are only $10,000 away from  their goal.  Every $5, $10, or $20 will bring them one step closer.

If you want to be part of this feel free to go to the “DONATE NOW” link below.  These funds will go directly to the Young Marines “Go Fund” account.


CLOSING STATEMENT at the 2016 4th of July SS American Memorial service:

“It was once said that the single greatest threat to our country is that we can no longer articulate what it means to be an American. We have either forgotten and what is not forgotten families have discontinued teaching the REAL history of our founding father’s sacrifices and the sacrifices of the generations of Americans that came after them”

This year’s 4th of July event is one for the history books.  Americans suffered the HOT Texas heat attending yet another inspiring and history-making event.
2. 9 Kids Q cook-off contests
3. Over $2500 in cash prizes
4. 350 plus attendees
5. $1000 raised for Guadalupe Valley Young Marines
6. $9000 received in donations towards SS American Memorial     Foundation
7. $4500 in beverage and t-shirt sales to benefit grounds maintenance
8. 40 volunteers
9. the
First event to be fully funded by donations

A big thank you to all the volunteers and sponsors that made this event happen – a special thanks to WORLD AUDIO and LIGHTS OF SAN ANTONIO for donating their amazing HIFI audio system to include their full time on-site audio staff to ensure a perfect event.  Feedback from the audience was – “the audio took the inspiring event to a new level”.  
A special thanks to Steve Grams chairman of the San Antonio Stock Show Rodeo BBQ Cook-Off and Darwin Hoel (BBQ judge and professional BBQ cooker) for taking over the reins of the cook-off this year.  Their expertise in the cook off arena took the entire event to a new level along with a great following of Texas professional cookers.  Stay tuned as Steve and Darwin plan future “sanctioned” cook-off events here starting in 2017.

THE PARTY’S OVER as the saying goes, but realize that this 4th of July event is not about the party – it is about recognizing the sacrifice of our founding fathers and all American’s that have paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we may continue to live free.  We encourage our readership to spread the word and note that this IS your memorial.  Get involved, bring your kids, invite your school, church, or private association out so that they made get an understanding of what it means to be an AMERICAN!


The newly formed foundation recognizes

L-R Al Leyendecker USN Ret, Rick Percy USN Vet, Rich Dentzmen USN Vet, Nancy Russell (Sec. of Treasure), Craig Russell USN Vet, Bob Sartor USMC Ret (Executive Director) – not in picture: Marty McDonough USN Ret, and Bob Krzywdzinski USN Ret

SS American Memorial Foundation 501(c) (3) non-profit status was recognized by IRS effective March 28, 2016

Our Foundation strives to act as a beacon of hope for wounded warriors, veterans, active duty, first responders, and American’s in need, offering more than just a one-time benefit.  The memorial building, grounds, and the fellowship of Americans offers a place of continuous respite care for those needing more than a tangible service or gift.

Our Foundation provides assistance to those that might find themselves overwhelmed by the shear volume of nonprofits offering various services.  Our website serves as a vehicle for anyone to view other nonprofits that we believe deliver on their services offered, in a prompt and professional manor.  We also assist these organizations by providing a FREE location to hold fund raising events.  Additionally, we may donate directly to these organizations to help further their mission.

I encourage you to follow our progress through our monthly newsletter to see how your donations are improving lives, mentoring our youth, and teaching American values and history.  You can find this information on our

Thank you again for assisting us in “getting the job done” one American at a time.


Craig G Russell
President & Founder

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