I often wonder what it feels like to wear a uniform that shows everyone around you that you signed up to enter dark, unpredictable, and often violent encounters. Instead of running from a situation, you run toward the situation. Instead of cowering and worrying about your safety, you are worried about the safety of everyone around you, including the person or people who are creating the violent situation. In all the comic books and Hollywood movies that I am aware of, this individual is called a hero or heroine.
For some reason, in our current society, these heroes and heroines have been improperly labeled. The job is getting harder to accomplish.
Rioters and general passerby’s are screaming profanities, spitting on, and/or agitating situations to push these first responders to their limits.
The limits are recorded for the world to see and the stigma grows larger and larger. Not only are the families that back these first responders holding their breath day by day to see what happens to their loved ones, but sons and daughters are also questioning whether their dad or mom is truly a hero or heroine like they always assumed they were.
And then this mom or dad and their family are invited into something.
A catalytic moment. A reminder. An identity shaping celebration.
20-50 people crowd into the lobby of a nice hotel in a quaint, chic little town called Boerne in Texas and prepare for the greeting.
A greeting for a Hero (Heroine). It’s timed, perfectly. The expectations and excitement are dancing all over the lobby. And then the family drives up thinking they are just checking into their hotel that was gifted for some much-needed time away.
Little do they know something seismic is about to happen. They walk in and 20-50 people clap, scream, cheer, and welcome the hero as they’ve never been welcomed before.
It shakes them to their core.
Flashbacks of wanting to be a first responder when they were a kid run through their head. How could so many random people greet me like a hero? Sometimes, tears. Sometimes, shock. Sometimes, a pause to take it all in.
Hope for Heroes Boerne Texas is in the business of reminding heroes who they truly are.
Brad Cornell (founder) recalls a story of a first responder they offered this weekend away to and his son going up to the room to put all the bags up so they could come back down for breakfast. When the dad returned he pulled Brad to the side and with tears in his eyes said that when they went upstairs his 12-year-old son said, “See dad, I always knew you were a hero”
WOW?!! What dad doesn’t want to hear that from their son. That’s legacy building.
This greeting reminds the whole family that they matter, that they are seen, that they are loved, and that they are a hero in the eyes of more people than they think.
A hotel room, a massive gift card (to spend in Boerne), a gorgeous gift basket, and an unexpected blessing pale in comparison to the greeting.
Brad passionately sees this as an opportunity to show the world that “these men and women are heroes, not zeros.”
At 66, he had an idea, and that idea turned into a non-profit, and almost every month without fail he brings a family to that same hotel with one goal to love them and show them that they are a hero!
“IT’S ALL IN THE GREETING!!!!” he screams into the phone for what seems like the hundredth time.
I’m SOLD. He’s Right!
This is why Churchill USA chose Brad and Hope for Heroes Boerne Texas as a strategic partner. Because it’s people like Brad taking the ordinary and making it extraordinary that changes our community and subsequently our world for the better.
This is why we are committed to donating a portion of the profits from each project to a non-profit of our clients’ choosing. The other reason we believe in telling this story is to inspire you to take action, to get involved where you can, and to be a part of the difference being made.
So the question is how can you get involved.
Maybe it’s a monthly gift, or a one-time gift, or a sizable end-of-the-year kind of gift. It doesn’t matter what the amount is. Every little bit goes toward rewriting the narrative for these first responders! Visit https://www.hopeforheroesboerne.org/ and hit the donate button
(halfway down the page)
Become a part of the hero breakfast community! Simply go to https://www.hopeforheroesboerne.org/ and hit the join button (halfway down the page)
In closing, Brad says, “We’re committed to the first responders in our communities who selflessly dedicate their lives to protecting ours.
They serve day and night in the most challenging circumstances— facing danger, injury, sickness, and even death—to ensure our safety and health. It’s our turn to give back to those who give their all.” We agree!
Brad thanks a million for showing us a way forward in rewriting the narrative for these first responders. Thanks for being brave enough to get the greeting right! We can’t wait to hear all the stories that will pour out from this fantastic endeavor.
To all the first responders, thank you, thank you, thank you. You are a hero (heroine) and we are grateful for your commitment to us! Thank you for your service!
P.S. To read more stories about the impact Hope for Heroes is having visit https://www.hopeforheroesboerne.org/impact