Reno Aces host Military Appreciation Night

Published: Aug. 21, 2023 at 6:10 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Honoring those who served while also looking ahead to help.

Over the weekend the Reno Aces held Military Appreciation Night, and there were a lot of changes made to the ballpark.

Five military vehicles from Harrah’s private collection lined the front gate during pre-game festivities. 17 new military members were sworn in during an enlistment ceremony, and a number of organizations came to the ballpark to spread awareness about their causes.

“People that have served in uniform have a bond that unfortunately civilians will never have,” said J.R. Stafford with Reno’s chapter of the Vietnam Veterans of America.

Stafford showed up to not only thank all veterans he saw, but to make sure no group feels left behind. Chapter 989 provides scholarships for younger veterans, and hosts a number of gatherings for veterans to attend.

In the second inning Stafford dedicated Greater Nevada Field’s Prisoner of War or Missing in Action chair.

Other groups, such as PTSD Now, spread awareness about their organization. They’ve raised money to bring on therapists to help those battling PTSD.

“How we watch after each other, our teamwork, making sure there’s connectedness and a sense of belonging within the organization, that’s the direction we’re headed,” said Colonel Daniel Rodger Waters, who helped establish the resiliency program within PTSD Now. “With our partnership with PTSD Now we’re making that happen.”

Craig Rauchle with the organization adding what it brings to those who suffer from PTSD.

“The concept is to provide this resiliency training and now we have our own trainers on staff in the National Guard so it can self-perpetuate in the future,” he said.

Reno Aces Marketing Director, AJ Grimm, had been working on the day’s festivities since January. Recognizing military members is important to the club.

“Without (veterans) we’re not able to play this game. It really gives us a behind the scenes look at what these people have gone through,” he said.

The Aces are auctioning off the special military uniforms from Friday’s game. Proceeds will go to local charities.