Injured veterans gathered for a special night of merriment during a recent Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) father-daughter dance. They swayed their way across the dance floor while socializing with other veterans, which aids warrior recovery, both physically and mentally.
“I’ve attended this event three years in a row and can’t stress how wonderful it is,” said Marine Corps veteran Joseph LaBonte. “It’s a great memory for me and my 7-year-old daughter, every time.”
“This event helped me connect with my three daughters,” said Marine Corps veteran Marcos Mendoza. “I love the bonds I’m building with my girls. They enjoyed the event, especially the dancing and desserts. I was able to pamper and treat my little ladies with respect and love. I showed them how I feel a man is supposed to treat a lady.”
Connecting family members of wounded veterans with one another and their communities helps long-term recovery needs, minimizes isolation, and creates a support structure during the healing process.
“For me, the dance meant that just for an hour or two, I didn’t have to be on alert or feel like a threat is about to happen,” Marcos said.
WWP connects warriors with one another, their families, and communities. It serves warriors through lifesaving programs and services targeting mental and physical health, career and benefits counseling, and support for the most severely wounded. And WWP empowers warriors to mentor other veterans and live life on their terms.
“I spent most of my time making sure it was a memorable night for my daughter,” Marcos said. “I enjoyed seeing the proud-dad faces around the dance floor and could feel the sense of warrior unity in the room.”
“Wounded Warrior Project has assisted me in a number of ways – from helping me prepare for a new job with a professional suit to sending me and my wife on a marriage-building event, both of which I wasn’t able to do at the time on my own,” Joseph said.