Friday, February 27, 2009

Horse ride and new friends

Down below I meant to mention some new buddies; I got Johnny and it goes blank! Besides Johnny; Judy, Jim, and Col. Rocky really made my day; a couple of times! You guys made me feel good about my effort even though I'm a little rough around the edges. Thanks for your support. It's nice to know that you folks are in this world, having you guys in it makes it a bit brighter. God bless!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Darius Rucker & Wounded Warriors !/18/09

I was able to set up a meet and greet with another group of warriors through Charlie V., really good guy in Nashville, before the Billy Ray Cyrus meet and greet. Diane and I had already met Darius at Cowboy Dance Hall in San Antonio and really enjoyed the show; Darius puts on one hell of a show. If you ever get a chance to go see Darius live, you should do it! Marcus, Jonathon, Jimmy, Betty, Ray, and Tim got into the show but only a few got to meet Darius. Someone dropped the ball on that one and our wounded missed most of the rodeo because their packets were messed up, we were trying to stop our vehicles from being towed. Eventually Duane from the Star experience got it right; thanks Duane! Some of our wounded warriors got frustrated and walked away and went back to the hospital; I am so sorry you guys didn't get to go. Perhaps it was just a mix up!
At the end of the evening we still made it a good time and look foward to our next get together.
John, We saw you go from hardly saying two words when we 1st met to smiling, laughing, and hugging in a matter of an hour or two. You above the rest warmed my heart because you came along way. You still have some way to go but I want you to know that your Mom, your friends, and I are behind you 100 %. Thanks for going with us; it meant alot to me.

Billy Ray Cyrus and the Wounded Warriors 2/14/09

I was able to get some of our wounded guys into the show at the At&t center in San Antonio during the rodeo season for a meet and greet with Mr. Cyrus. It was Valentines Day! Leroy and his boy Landon, Tyler, Matt & Michele, and Diane & I met Billy Ray, he signed autographs and talked to us for a bit. He is a very cool guy and we appreciate him meeting with us. We also met Paul A., he gave me a phone # in case we need anything from Billy Ray and Miley for the next benefit fundraiser. Thanks you guys!
Duane from the San Antonio Rodeo and Sarah from the AT&T center hooked us up and helped make it happen. The folks from the Star Experience should also be thanked as well as the AT&T center itself. I stepped on someone's toe there and apologized but my warrior friends were proud of me for making a stand to validate sacrifices made by our troops, past and present!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Guests of Honor Alamo Banquet

This posting is dedicated to our five special guests. You guys are the pride and joy of our great country and complete me as an American. You are also my friends! You have never treated me as an outsider or made me feel that I am not a small part of who you are; I am so proud of you and hope I have served you well, you inspire me to stay the course and I am honored; absolutely honored! Thanks for what you have sacrificed for me; I take it very personal; I wish the rest of America could know you like I do and be as greatful. Words are not enough for me, so the open road calls. do I have another 5000 miles left in me?, I certainly hope so!
Josh Stein: wounded on easter, gave his legs(didn't lose them, there is a difference) my brother from another mother. Rarely do you find such an inspiring young man who has faced such adversity. He has three wonderful daughters and great women to stand by him; I too stand by him. We hit it off instantly and we say bros for life! Thank you!
Leroy Petry: U.S. Army, my mechanical arm buddy and John Rich's source of joy(I'm sure, but you had to be there) Hanging with you and Landon has brought great joy to Diane & I. It may seem that we met by coincidence, I don't believe that! The 1st time we met I was able to do you a favor but don't thank me, thank Tracy Lawrence; he got us together. I respect you with all that I am and ride to hell and back for you. More great memories are ahead of us, if I can just calm down(smile).

Tyler Harell: U. S. Army, where Leroy goes, Tyler goes, and where Average Frank goes, you go! I have had so much fun with you on a few occassions; I wouldn't trade those times for anything. Those times will be with me til I go to my grave. Thanks for just being you, you make me happy and proud to know you.
Matt Sondermann: U.S. Marine Corps, Matt, you are like my 4th son, the one I didn't know until recently. You and your folks have treated me like family from day one. Do you have any idea how much that means to me? Knowing you brings tears to my eyes; they are tears of profound pride and gratitude. I am so inspired by you! I was so happy that I could help make Valentines day good for you and your girl; you guys are keepers! I should want to know you all the days of my life. I am compelled to thank your Mom & Dad for the gift of you in my life; you guys validate all the tough days I,ve had on my bicycle: I'm ready to ride again, thank you!
John Wayne: U. S. Army (retired), I met JW in Virginia, I was lost in the Dismal swamp when I first talked to you. We met the next day, from that day on you will remain one of my life's best friends. I love you man! You have given so many years of your life to God, Country, and Family and it hurts me how some people treat you. I am your civilian voice and I am ready, willing, and able to step on some toes for you; I don't care who I may offend in your cause; you know the drill cause it is you who has taught me the meaning of PATRIOTISM. There is nothing I wouldn't do for you; you call it!!!!!!!!!!! I profess my deep pride in you as well as my intense gratitude to you. My friends and I flew him from VA. to be a guest of honor in Dec. in San Antonio and I was excited to have you there.
All you guys go to foreign lands to defend or preserve freedom world wide; I take my freedom very seriously and go to great lengths to say,"THANK YOU"!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Mustang Bob and 150 miles on horseback

In one word, ouch! I had to take one for the team on this one. I rode buck, my noble steed, for eight days in a row; which is proof that I have absolutely no good sense.

before I say too much more about the ride I must first thank my good friend Bob Green and his family. Britney you are the bomb on that horse and really helped me more than you know. I love watching you ride cause your so graceful, I think you taught me alot about how to ride and how to enjoy it, thanks buddy! Tina & Larry, Robert pulled support for the ride, thanks guys! Bob you take the cake! I hope you enjoy the gift; it meant a lot to give it to you. You were always johnny on the spot for me and it wouldn't have happened without you; I'll be more careful for what I wish for next time(smile).

We started on the 29th of Jan. 2009. The 1st thing I learned is to never ever drink 4 or 5 cups of coffee before you ride where you can't just jump off and go pee. There were about 300 riders and I held it til I couldn't any more, then I found a fense and an open field to go in; big mistake but I learned quickly. When I got back on the horse he tried to buck me off, I stayed on him but I pulled a muscle in my inner thigh; that happened in the first half hour. I knew it was gonna be a long 8 days. The second and third day I suffered; I was so sore. At the end of the 3rd day I was wondering if I could actually finish the 150 miles. If I had been riding for me I would have given up; maybe! Once again I was riding in my sons name for our troops so I couldn't give up, I had to finish! The 4th and 5th day I grunted it out but I noticed I was becoming a much better rider and the soreness was going away. The 6th,7th, and 8th day I felt really good and I was riding like a champ; it still looked much easier on Lonesome Dove(the movie). Now that I'm all healed up I realize how cool it actually was; cause I'm a real cowboy(not). I'm hoping to post some video soon.

I think I should say a little about some of the folks I was honored to meet. Johnny

Alamo Banquet Dec.7th, 2008

Well on Dec. 7th Pearl Harbor Day and Fred's B-day we held our second ever dinner/auction benefit for our woundeded warriors. We promised the proceeds to Judith at the Warrior and Family Support Center at the Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio and we delivered. Judith said there were no small fish and made us feel good about our effort. The benefit fundraiser was held at the world famous Texas Pride BBQ in Adkins,TX. Tony and the staff really stepped up for this one. He is an awesome host and a good friend; I sure do admire and respect the folks at Texas Pride.
Once again my friends in the country music world hooked me up with a host of cool autographed memorabilia.Hats off to Charlie Daniels, Aaron Tippin, Tracy Lawrence, Dwight Yoakom, Toby Keith, Tim McGraw, Jake Owen, and Moe Bandy. You guys rock and we couldn't make it happen without you, thanks! Thanks also to my friends at Audio Productions in Nashville, TN.
These benefits are an attempt to build another go frank bridge accross America on behalf of our woundeded, killed in action, and their families; similar to the bridge I've tried to build with a multi thousand mile bike ride (which will resume very soon) into the heart of our great people. It is hard to start from scratch in each city and sort of takes a can do attitude when you know so few people, but I am making new friends and stepping on some toes along the way. I'm intense, I get it, I just want to get the job done; what ever it takes! The go frank team helps me get it done as there is no way I can do it by myself. Average frank is an idea not a person. I'm proud that the go frank team lives by one good rule: thought minus action equals zero; thanks team! We are the civilian can- doers for our troops. I feel like a pebble cast into the pond, its' ripple reaches all shores, yet it was not my idea to cast the pebble; I just happen to be paying attention for once(smile)! We are all blessed to share our beliefs. It is a mission of gratitude and hope.
Thank you to Fredd Bergman for all his kind words(not) and stern wisdom in helping me along. Thanks for my web site. He's a good man and I've grown fond of our friendship; but he is hard on me sometimes, but out of love and for good, always!
Thanks to Butch and Chris Bryson(and Tina). I donated my bike to an auction for Operation Iraqi Comfort in Sept. at an Aaron Tippin show when I was on the road with Aaron. I had about 5000 miles on that hog, anyway, Tony from Texas Pride bought it that evening and kept it. Then Tony donated it to our Dec. 7th auction, where Butch & Chris bought it so that I could have my treasured bike back as a wonderful gesture of their gratitude for my work, I suppose. That was very generous and it warmed my heart. It seemed it was my bike again and immediately asked if I could re-donate it on the spot; so I did! The bike never really was mine to begin with; it was our wounded warriors, I was just the rider, riding for those that cannot just yet, (it was Sean Furriers bike too). Then Tony bought it again and vowed to keep recycling the bike; we are gonna offer it at every auction we do from now on so that it sort of takes on a life of it's own, aint that the coolest? It might be the most expensive bike in America someday; Tony says he's gonna keep buying it.

Getting caught up on my blog

average frank here. hi everybody i need to get caught up on my blog!!!
On Dec. 4th 2008 I was able to take some wounded warriors to Randy Carrols christmas bash in San Antonio. Compliments of Tracy Lawrence, thanks Tracy! We had a great time and you made it happen. Average Frank,Diane, Leroy, Tyler, and John Wayne met Randy Carrol, Leann Womack, Jessica Simpson, and Billy Currington, that was cool. We hung out back stage with Jake Owen, Tracy Lawrence,and John Rich. These guys have big hearts and showed my wounded friends how much they mean to us; they were very graciuos. After the show we went on thier bus and our new found country friends showed love to our troops, past and present, by playing patriotic songs with their acoustic guitars, awesome! Then they took us all for a beer or two at the closest establishment; needless to say it was a real groove. We all had a great time and want to thank those guys. We hope we can see you soon!

past and present

In 1994 I hit a guy on a bicycle, sadly he died. He had a dog with him; they were both DOA. It was an apparent suicide. he almost took me with him, damaging some nerves in my neck, which left me some-what paralized and in deep physical and emotional pain. I felt so sorry for myself, I felt sorry for him and his dog too, but mostly felt sorry for myself. Ive been an avid athlete and rock climber most of my life and now I couln't do jack, why me,wa wa wa? I thought I was stong and could recover but the re-occuring nightmarish dreams and the pain haunted me nearly every night; I dreaded going to sleep. I did some drugs, fought with my beloved wife, and ignored my kids. I got caught with a small of drugs. I pleaded guilty because I was guilty! I did some days in jail and then successfully completed three years probation. However, I lost my wife and children in the chaos; I had hit rock bottom. One day I tripped over a small pocket bible, picked it up and started reading, before I new it I was most of the way through the book of John and asking to be baptized. I turned to our best buddy Jesus; he has never let me down although I still had much work to do in my own life; I still had issues! I started counseling for my bad dreams of the accident and drug and alchohol use. I completed that as well. Before too long the dreams subsided and I got my health back, then I re-united with my wife and children. We were devorced by then but we fought with all our will and with the grace of God and our family's blessing we were re-married on 1/1/08. I've gotton a few traffic tickets since then but went on to coach wrestling for some years and to also compete in the same tournaments that my boys wrestled in. Until recently coaching was one of the great joys of my life. The point is that if a man is really willing to put the work in he can overcome many things; the most important thing though is to keep your faith; being of strong faith gives all the armor of God and there is much hope in knowing that. Some said I couldn't ride accross America on a bicycle, then I did. Thanks to all those who have offered an olive branch or a hand shake to me; it means alot.