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Operation Restored Warrior – June 2021

Operation Restored Warrior recently hosted a Drop Zone program at Patriot Point, bringing five veterans from across the country for the weekend. The guests included Navy and Marine Corps veterans and were joined by ORW’s team of six veterans who served in the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps.

“The men left in a completely different and better place than where they were when they arrived,” said Tim Harting, Operation Restored Warriors’ director of drop zone operations. “Their hearts were healed and restored during their time at Patriot Point. Operation Restored Warrior has a deep commitment to rescuing, restoring and rebuilding veteran warriors.”

New Reflection Room

Patriot Point guests have one more space to enjoy solitude and a great view with the creation of a third-floor Reflection Room in the Main House.

The room features 360-degree views of the property and is a private place for guests to sit with each other and chat or quietly take in the scenic view. The Taishoff Family Foundation recently donated the furniture for the Reflection Room.

“I asked [Patriot Point General Manager Hugh Middleton and Volunteer Coordinator Mike Mattingly] what do the guests want? What is relaxing for them? What is their comfort zone? said Kathy Taishoff, who designed the room’s interior. Taishoff’s husband, Rob, is one of Patriot Point’s managing members. And the feedback was to keep it rustic like the rest of the house. It had to be what guests wanted to help them be comfortable.”

The room features a leather sofa with a pullout bed and two large club chairs side-by-side, facing the water. Two glass-top side tables are cut out of a tree trunk and lighting comes from deer antler lamps. A bar-height pub table from reclaimed wood is complemented by two oversized Adirondack chairs with thick leather cushions. Two ottomans provide storage space, extra seating and an added level of comfort, while two silk trees add to the relaxed vibe in the room.

“I wanted to furnish it so that guests are comfortable and it gives them a sense of peace,” Kathy Taishoff said. “It’s just cozy, a quiet place where people can relax alone or together.”

Strittmatter Companies Dig

It was a weekend of hard work for a crew of five for Strittmatter Companies, which continued its support of Patriot Point as it brought four pieces of heavy equipment – an excavator, a bulldozer, a track end dump and a trench roller – to improve the fields and impoundments.

Strittmatter area superintendent Dennis Boswell arrived on Friday and worked until dark getting things started. Among the work that the crew completed was enlarging an impoundment pond and making it deeper, installing a pipe to drain a field that retained water, building one road and removing another and leveling a field.

“It was a long day on Saturday,” Boswell said. “But we do it because we appreciate helping out. The service members who come to Patriot Point have made a lot of sacrifices for our country. Strittmatter is happy to have the opportunity to do work at Patriot Point and in turn help provide such an incredible place for guests to visit.”

Last Hunt January 2021

Patriot Point recently welcomed a group of four combat veterans for a weekend hunt and they were joined by several donors and prospective donors.

The veterans included U.S. Marine Corps veteran Joey Jones, a double amputee who is a Fox News contributor; U.S. Marine Corps veteran Danny Ridgeway, a recipient of the Silver Star; retired U.S. Navy SEAL Harold Bologna; and Sean Kelly, who served in the U.S. Army Special Forces.

“The last hunt of the season is always a big one with a lot of folks in attendance,” Patriot Point General Manager Hugh Middleton said. “This year was no different. Everyone showed up midday on Friday for a few hours of hunting in the afternoon. Saturday was an all-day hunt with a short break for breakfast and lunch. It was a great opportunity for our civilian guests to sit in the blinds with some of our nation’s finest warriors. The storytelling carried on into the evening around the dinner table and fireplace.” 

“Everyone involved with Patriot Point from concept to reality are to be commended,” guest Jimmy Molloy wrote afterward. “What a fabulous place for such a deserving cause. The rehab of the Main House and the landscaping and pavers/drive bring everything together. …

“I look forward to a future hunt and it won’t be my last donation.”

USO-Metro August Retreat

USO of Metropolitan Washington-Baltimore hosted four active-duty military couples for a retreat at Patriot Point.

The couples began their stay by touring the facility and enjoying lunch, followed by kayaking and paddle boarding.

“They went out far into the water and enjoyed the beautiful weather that day,” said Brittany Buzzutto, USO-Metro’s field operations coordinator. “Many couples found it relaxing to walk along the beach and look at the tiny jellyfish that were floating in the water. The couples also enjoyed walking down the pier and enjoying the view.”

Following dinner, the group gathered on the beach for a bonfire.

“They talked with each other for hours about deployment locations, life with children, and the current state of the world,” Buzzutto said. “They all seemed to have a wonderful time, I wish I would have arranged for them to get to Patriot Point sooner. Things were very relaxing for them!”

Phase II Construction

Phase II of construction at Patriot Point is ongoing, with work focusing on the 1925 Main House Renovation.

Thanks to Pella Mid-Atlantic and the Maryland Building Industry Association’s Home Builders Care Foundation, the exterior doors and windows have been replaced, creating a much more energy-efficient environment.

Also, TW Perry continues to be a tremendous partner of Patriot Point, supplying nearly all of the exterior siding, interior framing, doors and trim material.
Among the other contributors to the project:

  • Mangan and Associates donated the design work.
  • Patriot Point volunteer coordinator Mike Mattingly and his tireless crew have contributed demolition and ongoing assorted skilled labor projects.
  • Shelter Systems provided a structural engineering inspection and materials for repairs.
  • United Rentals and Reliant Drywall donated a lift to install exterior siding and drywall material.
  • Freestate Electric, a Union Sportsman Alliance member, is donating electrical labor, materials and fixtures.
  • Union Sportsman Alliance tradespeople also are donating much of the plumbing labor and material and others are planning further donations, including painting labor.

Patriot Point is currently looking for donations of tile material and carpeting.

“We are incredibly appreciative of the members of the Maryland Building Industry Association and the Union Sportsmen’s Alliance for their contributions at Patriot Point,” Military Bowl Foundation President & Executive Director Steve Beck said. “It is heartwarming to know that we have so many partners who share our commitment to providing a first-class retreat for the men and women who serve the nation so selflessly.”

Hope For the Warriors

Hope For the Warriors earlier this month hosted a group of three veterans and their families and friends at Patriot Point.

Ken Sutherby, director, outdoor adventures of Hope for the Warriors, said the group include a husband and wife that were both veterans and their four children; another veteran and his wife; and a third veteran who brought four close friends.

The group enjoyed an early-morning fishing charter (because that’s when the fish were biting) followed by crabbing, which netted a bushel of crabs for dinner that night.

“Everyone had a great time and enjoyed their stay,” Sutherby said. “Patriot Point creates a rare opportunity for veterans and families to enjoy all that the Maryland Eastern Shore has to offer. Guests have amazing lodging on a beautiful property that offers fishing, crabbing, kayaking, paddle boarding or just relaxing on the beach. Patriot Point staff worked tirelessly to ensure that all the veterans enjoyed their stay. This was a much needed retreat for the veterans and their families!”

Military Warriors Support Foundation Independence Day

The Military Warriors Support Foundation brought five veterans and their families to Patriot Point for a weeklong stay over the Independence Day holiday.

“A lot of things we do takes the fathers away,” said David Dougherty, director of the MWSF Skills4Life program. “This year we are focusing on families and keeping them together on the adventure of a lifetime.”

“This place is amazing,” Trent Brining, a Purple Heart Recipient who was joined on the trip by his wife and two children, said early in the visit. “Can’t wait to see what the week holds.”

The group certainly enjoyed its visit, taking in all that Patriot Point has to offer and even making time for a quick visit to Washington, D.C. At Patriot Point, the group enjoyed the beach and hit the water often, hauling in plenty of fish and crabs.

“My kids will talk about this for years,” said Jeff Cleland, a Marine veteran who was joined by his wife and two children on the visit. “My kids have told me stories of catching crabs every night before bed. They are exaggerating the size and amount of crabs caught, but they loved catching what we ate at night.”

Thanks to Joe and Linda Beck, whose generosity made the retreat possible.

Ryan, Mary & Isabelle

Patriot Point recently hosted Ryan, Mary and their daughter Isabelle for a weekend.

Ryan has 18 years of service in the U.S. Army. Most of that time, he has been on active duty and he has been in the West Virginia National Guard since 2014. He served multiple overseas tours and participated in combat operations supporting Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Ryan was severely injured in a parachuting accident two years ago and assigned to the Warrior Transition Unit at Fort Belvoir for medical rehab at Walter Reed and Fort Belvoir hospitals. Earlier this month, he was approved for medical retirement, but elected to instead defer the retirement for two years and returned to duty in the National Guard.

“My wife, Mary, and I have each stayed at Patriot Point in the past for different events, but this is the first time we were able to bring our daughter, Isabelle,” Ryan said. “During this visit we enjoyed several exciting activities such as fishing, crabbing and sporting clays.  We also had a great time playing in the sand on the beach and chasing small fish around in the shallow water.

“The housing accommodations were perfect for our family and we took advantage of the big kitchen, board games and terrific (Under Armour Freedom Fitness Center).  We definitely look forward to the next time we visit Patriot Point again.”

Hawthorne Group 2019

Patriot Point recently hosted a group of veteran service members for a relaxing weekend and the opportunity to enjoy each other’s company. The group enjoyed a wonderful time, hitting the water and catching several large fish, popping into the Under Armour Freedom Fitness Center for workouts and much more.

“We would highly recommend the experience to other veterans,” wrote Joseph J. Holliday.

“We had a great time in a great environment where we all were able to get away from all of our troubles for a moment,” wrote Kenny Hawthorne. “Each time I come to Patriot Point, it gives me a chance to regenerate.”