Dietz & Watson 2018 Hometown Heros

We’ve joined forces to honor active & veteran service men & women!

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Congratulations to the 2018 Dietz & Watson Hometown Heros! These brave servicemen and women's astounding sacrifices and leadership have made them an inspiration to our community. Thank you for your service to our country.

Christopher Wheeler 

SSG Wheeler loves three things: his family, his country, and the Baltimore Ravens. For the last 8 years, he has fearlessly served his country, deploying to Iraq once and Afghanistan four times. As a Religious Affairs NCO, he is passionate about the welfare and emotional well-being of his subordinates and fellow service members. As a native of Baltimore, he understands what it means to selflessly give back to the community. If he's not volunteering at homeless shelters, he is mentoring young boys. He encourages them to look past their current situations and create goals for success. Ravens players go above and beyond, on and off the field. SSG Wheeler goes above and beyond, in and out of uniform. SSG Wheeler truly exemplifies Baltimore's Hometown Hero in every way. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Matthew White

Matthew did two tours in Afghanistan, the second was cut short by an IED explosion. While recovering at Walter Reed, he adopted a rescue dog that he credits with getting him through the loss of his leg and dealing with the darkness of PTSD. Matthew is an accomplished athlete who still runs marathons, climbs mountains and spends his free time helping other wounded veterans and advocating on behalf of rescue dogs and cats. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Stephanie Harrison

I met my wife in basic training 18 years ago and married her in technical school. We served together at Dover AFB until her separation, though she continues to serve as a civilian in the 3AS. By far Stephanie has the most patriotic and duty-bound heart of anyone I've ever met. She is extremely active with Team RWB, an organization which connects veterans through group activities and helps stave off the feelings of isolation those in transition often experience. She is very often asked to sing the anthem at military ceremonies; high profile changes of command, promotions, and retirements. While she might not daily wear the uniform and longer, the leadership at Dover AFB still consider her an integral part of the Airlift function. In fact she has won the civilian of the year award, amongst others, multiple times. As a female Veteran, however, she is often overlooked. It happens with regular frequency that we will be in public together, especially at patriotic or veteran themed events, and I am asked about, and thanked, for my service, without any recognition of hers. Though she won't admit it, I know that the realization of the public's perception of the military still being a men's organization pains her greatly. There is no other person I know that gives so much of themselves, purely driven by a love of her country and overwhelming desire to serve. Click HERE to watch her inspiring story.

Jerry Sasser

My husband was a Purple Heart recipient which he earned for his efforts during the Khobar Towers bombing in 1996. He was on the 4th floor of the building when the explosion occurred. Once he regained his bearings, he carried people out of the building (some alive, some not that fortunate). He spent almost 18 years in the Air Force before he was medically discharged (which he fought desperately against, as he LOVED serving this country). While he is originally from Florida, I’m from Maryland and have been a Ravens fan since the franchise started in 96. Jerry, consequently, became a Ravens fan as well when we started dating. Now, he's just as dedicated to our boys in black and purple as I always have been! Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Samuel Osuna

Almost 60 years of government service and still going strong. Samuel was both in Air Force and Army. He is a Vietnam Veteran. Samuel was reported missing and was thought have been captured by opposing army during the Vietnam War. He was later found after 11 days after he was reported missing navigating through the jungles of Vietnam. Currently, he works for the government. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Margaret Smith

Captain Maggie Smith works hard at everything. Whether it's running military operations, running ultra-marathons, or running around after her nine year-old daughter, she gives it her all. Maggie enlisted in the Army at the age of 24 - she had dropped out of college, roamed Europe and the US, and worked some random jobs before deciding it was time to finish her education. She chose the Army as her route to completing college and, 13-years later, is now attending George Washington University to earn her PhD in Science and Technology Policy through the Army's Advanced Civil Schooling program. She commissioned through the Army's Green to Gold Program in 2013, was named a Pat Tillman Scholar, and has competed for the All Army Sports Marathon and Cross Country Teams. She has served in Germany and Iraq but the majority of her time has been spent here in MD at Fort Meade. She is an advocate for women facing hereditary breast and ovarian cancers associated with the BRCA 1 and 2 genetic mutations and openly shared her story with preventive surgery to help other women make choices of their own. As a mother, she aims to be the best role model possible for her daughter and tries to prove that women can have whatever goals they want. She is a proud patriot and someone who has dedicated her life to service. Click HERE to watch her inspiring story.

Nelson Moody 

Nelson is a Staff Sergeant in the U.S. Army and the true definition of a hometown hero. He graduated from Baltimore City College High School and played at the M&T Bank stadium for the City vs Poly game. In 2007 he helped lead his alma mater wrestling team to victory, winning the 2007 Baltimore City Wrestling Championships. After high school, he joined the Army and served for 14 years. While serving, he received many decorations for overseas assignments and outstanding service to our country.   Nelson has always given back to his hometown, whether it's feeding the homeless, feeding veterans, participating in toy drives for kids or visiting hospitals with gifts for sick children during the holidays, he always puts others before himself. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Robert Simms 

Simms enlisted in the United States Marine Corp. at 22 years old in July 2011. He did his basic training in Paris Island, SC and then technical training in Pensacola to become a helicopter engine mechanic. In 2013 he was deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. During that deployment, he had to watch the birth of his first daughter via Skype. He was then deployed for a second tour. Simms said he chose the Marine Corp because he wanted to become part of a brotherhood like no other and to face the greatest challenge of his life by becoming part of the most elite fighting force on the planet. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.

Robert Simms III

Simms enlisted in the United States Marine Corp. at 22 years old in July 2011. He did his basic training in Paris Island, SC and then technical training in Pensacola to become a helicopter engine mechanic.

In 2013 he was deployed to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. During that deployment, he had to watch the birth of his first daughter via Skype. He was then deployed for a second tour.

Simms said he chose the Marine Corp because he wanted to become part of a brotherhood like no other and to face the greatest challenge of his life by becoming part of the most elite fighting force on the planet. Click HERE to watch his inspiring story. 

 

Stephen C. Weaver

Weaver served in Vietnam in 1965 and 1966. During an ambush he was wounded and subsequently lost his right arm as well as partial hearing in his right ear. He received two Purple Hearts for his sacrifice. After the incident and rehab, Weaver was forced to learn to do everything left handed. As his son tells it, he could “eventually do anything a two-handed person could do.” He never used his disability as a crutch and generally doesn’t like to receive notoriety or recognition or thanks for his sacrifice. Weaver has been a Ravens season ticket holder since the new stadium opened in 1998. He and his son also went to games at Memorial Stadium where their love for the Ravens was born. They come to every game and tailgate and cheer hard for the Ravens! Click HERE to watch his inspiring story.