Hello, My name is Jim Byrne I served as a Navy SEAL for over 25 years completing 13 deployments. I did two tours in Iraq and five in Afghanistan. During that time, I witnessed the absolute best of men and the worst. I lost dozens of my teammates over the years, some were personal friends others I know by face or reputation, but they were all brothers. My experiences hardened me to the world and those in it. After all of that, I did not know I was facing the most difficult battle of my life, and I was going to lose.
I thought I knew what courage was until I saw my son Sean face cancer with the poise and grace of a seasoned warrior in combat. He did not become hardened or bitter like I had become in combat. He touched the lives of people, he was strong and gentle, he faced his own mortality with faith, hope, determination, passion, generosity and a smile for everyone to the very end, he was gracious and thinking of others before himself. Writing this brings tears to my eyes, admiration to my heart and hope to my spririt.
Throughout our battle the NSW Foundation was there for me and my family. They helped pay for unplanned medical expenses and ultimately with the additional support of TF Dagger paid to put my son to rest. I can never forget how the support they provided softened the blow, even if ever so slightly to me and my family through the most difficult years of my life.
The Honor Foundation (THF) helped me find a path to my mission after service.
The SEAL Future Foundation (SFF) linked me with USD and the MSEL program.
Task Force Dagger provided my family time and space to start healing.
Pedal for Patriots http://www.pedalforpatriots.com/ was started by my good friend Christian Fitzgerald a few years ago. After a tour of the Naval Special Warfare Center he was so touched by the losses we have suffered over the years he knew he had to do something. He saw the wall of heroes and said to me in that momment "I have to do something!"
I am riding with him and several other riders from Atlanta, GA to Ameila Island, FL to raise money for the NSW Foundation. This is my way to thank the foundation for thier generosity and support my friend in his patriotism and determination to support our community.
Please donate if you can and share with everyone so we can continue to support our amazing community and all of those in it.
Feel free to contact me directly if you have any questions. James.firstname.lastname@example.org