On Memorial Day, the Braves and Emory University honored veterans and celebrated the first year of BraveHeart: Welcome Back Veterans Southeast Initiative at Turner Field with a visit from retired Gen. Peter W. Chiarelli, former Vice Chief of Staff of the Army.
General Chiarelli threw the first pitch and delivered a message of thanks to the fans for their support of the troops. Wounded warrior Army Captain Dan Berschinski served as the honorary team captain. In addition, a giant American flag, along with stars representing the five branches of the military, was displayed and held by members of our nation's military while military personnel from various branches lined the bases during the national anthem.
The BraveHeart Initiative was created in 2011 to serve the veterans and their families who reside in the Southeast thanks to a $1 million grant from the Welcome Back Veterans Initiative, a partnership between the Robert R. McCormick Foundation and Major League Baseball.
BraveHeart is a screening, assessment and service program designed to provide veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan education about posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and guidance for access to mental health and counseling services. The initiative will be able to connect veterans with a number of experts throughout the southeast who are willing to provide care at very low cost, or for free.
During every game at Turner Field, members of the Armed Forces can show their military ID at ticket windows for 2-for-1 Upper Box tickets.