Sticks for Soldiers Thanksgiving Lacrosse Classic
The 11th Annual Sticks for Soldiers Classic will be held on Saturday November 26th, 2016 at Fairfield Ludlowe High School in Fairfield, Conn. Help us raise financial support and awarness for our wounded servicemen and women for this 11th anniversary tournament.
The 2015 Tournament and events had 58 Boys and Gits teams with nearly 900 high school athletes and by early December 2015 has raised over $125,000 for our Honorees. Since its beginning in 2006, more than $575,000 has been raised. It is organized and hosted by the Fairfield Ludlowe High School boys lacrosse program.
Sticks for Soldiers is a non-profit 501c3 charity lacrosse tournament held in Fairfield, Connecticut. Its dual mission is to raise financial support for the service men and women who put their lives on the line for our country, while also raising awareness of their sacrifice to our high school youth. Through their play and fund-raising participation, the athletes can demonstrate their tangible thanks and support.
Over $575,000 raised since 2006
The tournament, held always on Thanksgiving Saturday, has raised over $575,000 in the 10 years, and is an anticipated regional fall-ball competition. Varsity and sub-varsity teams from Tri-State area high schools will participate in a 7-on-7 tournament game format and each team will play at least 3 games. Team entry fees, T-shirt sales, silent auction, sponsors, raffles and private donations will be donated to this year's cause. The tournament usually will start at 9:00 am and conclude by approximately 3:30 pm with a mid-day ceremony to honor the beneficiaries.
2015 Tournament Honorees
The 10th anniversary tournament raised over $125,000 in support of two of our severely wounded military.
US Army Captain ( RET) Nicholas Vogt: Nicholas John Vogt was raised in rural Ohio as the oldest of 5 siblings, and was graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 2010 with a bachelors degree in Life Sciences. Following graduation, he trained as an infantry officer at Ft. Benning, Georgia and completed his Airborne and Ranger School qualifications before reporting to Ft. Wainwright in Fairbanks, Alaska. Since his unit was deployed at that time, he immediately left to meet them in southern Afghanistan. Soon after his arrival, he was assigned as the commander of an infantry platoon.
While leading his unit on a foot patrol on November 12th, 2011, Nicholas was severely injured by an IED. This resulted in double above-knee amputations and a traumatic brain injury, among other things. After over two years of recovery, Nicholas returned to active duty and completed his service time as a professor’s aide at the United States Naval Academy in the Leadership, Ethics, and Law Department. He was medically retired in June 2015 as an Army captain. On September 19th, 2015, Nicholas married LTJG Lauren Vogt, a Navy nurse he met while recovering at Walter Reed. They live in Arlington, Virginia. Nicholas is currently attending George Washington University, pursuing a masters degree in Bioinformatics.
United States Marine Corps Sergeant Eddie Ryan: Born and raised in rural Ellenville, New York now living in Lake George, Eddie enlisted in the Marine Corps directly from high school in 2002 at age 18, following in his father’s footsteps and compelled after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. After boot camp, he was immediately deployed to Iraq and saw combat in Nasariya and Ramadi. His second deployment was to Djibouti, Africa. On his 3rd deployment to Iraq in April, 2005, he was shot in the head by two machine gun rounds on a rooftop. He was not expected to survive except for the effort of his fellow marines. In the words of his father, “Day by day as he was in ICU, the prayers were working. Eddie was fighting and at 3 ½ weeks Eddie was off the Life Support that the doctors said he would be on for the rest of his life. Eventually, weeks after that, Eddie started tracking us with his eyes. One day a peer of his, (a fellow sergeant), who was an experienced Marine sniper, came to visit him from Hawaii, Eddie did the unbelievable he SMILED.”
Eddie has severe TBI from the bullet wounds to his skull and face, and is wheelchair bound with only limited use of one arm. After 10 years since his “Alive day,” he lives with his devoted mother Angela and father Chris and they care for him 24/7/365. He requires daily care and therapy of all kinds, from muscle coordination, speech, and normal activities. In order to receive the much-needed VA benefits which were not readily available in rural Ellenville, the family decided to uproot their home of 30 years, and move to Lake George where they had a seasonal home and be closer to VA services in Albany. There is still much regular care needs beyond what the VA can support.