Each year, the Semper Fi Community Task Force of North Alabama (SFCTF) is honored to host Heroes’ Week, a week full of food, new friends, and many exciting activities and new adventures!
Often, these American heroes and their families do not receive the welcome home that so many of our military are given after returning home. Many were in hospitals, recovering from injuries received in the line of duty, while their units completed the deployment and returned to a hero’s welcome.
We recently included first responders in the scope of our mission. Each year, local first responders who have been injured in the line of duty are nominated by their leadership and invited to attend Heroes’ Week.
This event gives our Tennessee Valley/Northern Alabama communities the chance to show their deep appreciation and recognition of these service members, their spouses, and caregivers.
Our guests are honored at the Huntsville, Alabama, Veterans’ Day parade, Marine Corps Ball, yacht cruises on Lake Guntersville, aerial tours of North Alabama by private pilots, and numerous lunches and dinners hosted by local organizations and businesses.
The Welcome Home
Our visiting heroes and their caretakers arrive at the Huntsville International Airport via commercial air or vehicle from across the Country. They are met at the airport by hundreds of appreciative greeters from our local community.
- These greeters include numerous youth and Veterans groups, Redstone Arsenal and Community leaders, our community partners and other local business representatives, school groups, and others across the local community.
Our guests are transported by motorcade to a local hotel in Huntsville with a police vanguard and the Patriot Guard Riders, Semper Fi Riders Motorcycle Clubs, and more as their escort.
Flying, Floating, and Fellowship
During Heroes’ Week, guests enjoy an aerial view of the Tennessee Valley with participating local pilots.
They are also treated to a Yacht cruise and dinner on Lake Guntersville by the City of Guntersville, Guntersville’s Mayor, the Lake Guntersville Yacht Club, the Alabama State Marine Police and the City of Guntersville Fire Department Fireboat, AUSA – Redstone, and Vets with Vettes and Corvette Owners.
These groups all work together, hosting our guests for a relaxing and fun afternoon cruise around Lake Guntersville, followed by a delicious southern-style seafood dinner.
The Ball and a Day of Beauty
On the morning of the Marine Corps Birthday Ball, the Task Force teams with local makeup artists, hair stylists, and spa experts to provide our female guests with a day of beauty in preparation for the big event.
It is an amazing opportunity for these heroes and caregivers to remember that they should take time to care for themselves, so they can continue to care for their spouses and families. It is a chance for them to relax and enjoy time with their spouses and their many new friends.
Good Fishing, Good Food
Some years, our Heroes have also been treated to a Bass fishing tournament where they were paired with a professional Bass fisherman with a professional quality boat, tackle,
Huntsville/Madison County’s Veterans’ Day celebration is like no other. Our Heroes and caretakers start their morning with a Veterans Breakfast in downtown Huntsville and then they climb into Chevy Corvettes driven by the Vets with Vettes and Corvette Owners club, and ride as Guests of Honor in the Huntsville Veterans’ Day Parade.
The week concludes with an Alabama-style Farewell BBQ Dinner and concert at Redstone Harley Davidson.