My uncle, Brian Hoke, was a Navy SEAL and a paramilitary officer who was killed in action in Afghanistan in October 2016. He was a hero to our family and to our country. For as long as I can remember he was always the "cool" uncle to my brother and me and was our inspiration. Brian lifted up those around him and made us all feel as if we were his top priority when he was around. Losing him has been rough, but in this loss our families have come together; meaning both our family by name and our military family that we have since come to know. The Navy SEAL Foundation has played a vital role in bringing us all together, sponsoring collaborative events, and aiding in the healing process of the families like us who are experiencing loss.
Not long after his death, my Maine Man Jon Ruterbories and I completed a half marathon together. We ran the race with far less training than we needed yet powered through the race, dedicating our efforts to Brian. When Brian was in Afghanistan, he was signed up to race in an Antarctic Ice Marathon which my Aunt Christy, his wife, later ran in his honor and in his place. For this marathon, Christy raised significant funds for the SEAL Foundation. So, Jon and I decided it was our turn for Round Two, but we would do it with a slightly higher temperature than Antarctica.
On April 28, Jon and I are running a marathon in southwest Missouri in Brian's honor, to raise funds for the Navy SEAL Foundation. Brian was a huge supporter of the SEAL Foundation and we would be so appreciative if you would be willing to contribute anything you are able and we thank you for you support of our troops.