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November 2, 2011

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November 2, 2011

Our son had an awesome experience of hunting at Leek on the spring turkey hunt. He was invited by his neighbor, Marty Mescall. James lost both his legs in '08 and arrived home from hospitals in March and was so ready to get out in the woods. Leek provided a Trac-chair for our son to manuever where no wheelchair could get him. His broad smile lit the whole country-side with the freedom of joining into hunting that he so longed for.Before his injury James was an avid hunter and fisherman.While at Leek he met other Wounded Warriors who overcame obstacles of war injuries and broadened their hope of doing something that made them feel normal once again. The Leek Foundation opened the door of new beginnings with their willingness to get James in the woods. He was so excited to return in the fall for the black powder hunt. He talked of his experience often and looked forward to meeting up with more warriors to share his hunts with. It is with great sadness that we share our sons shattered dreams at this time. James lost his life in a terrible accident at an amusement park in July. We reflect now on all the good memories that made our son beam with excitement and such anticipation. The Leek preserve is a wonderful organization of volunteers who truly care for wounded people to get beyond their disabilities and explore all the endless boundaries that nature provides thru people with heart. We tell so many soldiers of this wonderful treasure in the beautiful hills of Pa. May God bless everyone who helps make this possible. It gives us such happiness to know our son took part in a wonderful experience outside the walls of therapies, Drs. and military regimen. We will continue to support such a wonderful organization thru our healing as it helps us to know we the joy it brings all who participate. Thank you Leek for what you gave to our son. John and Nancy Hackemer

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

seeing the expressions on our sons return and the excitement in his voice to be able to return for future events

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

None that we know of.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

very caring. very informative.

What, if any, change in your life has this group encouraged?

Meeting up with wonderful people who embrace the broken lives of those who have an uphill struggle. It makes us proud to be connected to such a great bunch of people!!

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

Since volunteering to help LEEK 3 years ago, I've had the distinct pleasure of watching a dedicated and caring team of volunteers completely rally around our Nations Wounded Warriors. I've seen Army and Marine Corps Generals come visit and lend a helping hand to ensure thee heroes have an outstanding experience at LEEK.

I hope my service to them, has helped them on their journey of recovery.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've been at every LEEK event since October 2009 and seen the smiles on the Warriors faces, helped them process their successful hunts, heard their stories, and seen them bond with each other. I've also seen some of them come back to LEEK a second time.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Build a bigger bunk house so more Warriors could come to each of the four annual events.

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

The opportunites a disabled war veteran receives from LEEK exceeds any expectations they would have to go hunting and enjoy the camaraderie of their fellow soldier. The LEEK volunteers are so supporting and always there to ensure that this experience is one that each and every veteran will remember for the rest of their lives. I total support the selfless efforts that the Fisher family and friends have provided to our soldiers.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

As a retired soldier, I certainly understand how important it is to give to those that have fought for our freedom. I am also retired from the Federal Government and got to work with one of the most dedicated person I know, Ed Fisher. Additionally, his wife Kate works right by his side for this most worthy cause. Ed would always come back from his week hunting with the veterans with a big smile on his face and the stories he shared with us were so uplifting.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

What can I say, there is nothing I would change. They are providing the best to the "Best". If I could, I would recommend it for some Federal Funding.

More feedback...

Was your donation impactful?

Definitely

How likely is it that you would recommend that a friend donate to this group?

Definitely

How likely are you to donate to this group again?

Definitely

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

Lasagna & Soldiers
A few of years ago I went on a DICE Run for a place called L.E.E.K. Hunting & Mountain Preserve. The DICE Runs are motorcycle rides put together for “good causes.” During the rides, there are stops where you roll dice, purchase raffle tickets, buy chances (you get the
idea.) At the end of the ride everybody turns in their little papers, which were used to keep track of the dice rolls. One of the ride organizers sits there and figures out who rolled the highest throughout the day and the High Roller wins half the money that’s been collected. (High Roller always give their half back to the organization that we’re riding for)… nice, right? They’re always a lot of fun, and nice amounts of money are donated to the cause that the ride was set up for! I’m sure most of you have even participated in such events. I’m trying to paint a picture here… bear with me. Oh, yeah… Chinese auctions are part of the fund raising events, also…
After that ride for L.E.E.K., I found myself thinking about that place. I thought “that really is a wonderful idea, that L.E.E.K. place…” The long and short of this place is this… it’s two Brothers, US Military Brothers who, in memory of their DAD, came up with a hunting and fishing get-away-and-have-fun place for severely injured Soldiers! I cried the first time I was there. I cry every time I think about it. I can’t help it – I’m a weenie like that!
The wounded Soldiers who get to enjoy this little adventure are (a lot of them) coming right out of the US Military Hospitals. Most of them are young. They’re missing body parts. Sometimes both legs are gone, sometimes half of a leg. They’re blind in one eye because of an injury. Some are missing half of an arm. Some have all of their limbs, but the limbs don’t work anymore because of a brain injury. Brain injuries are caused by the Soldiers suffering strokes due to severe blood loss. Other Soldiers suffer brain injury caused by concussions they’ve suffered from bombs used in the wars today. Some “look” okay, but they’re having a hard time of it, mentally/emotionally. The L.E.E.K. gang welcome one and all… well, all that they can – it’s a small operation. Oh, I forgot to tell you, the name of the guys who started this whole thing, are Edward and Lewis Fisher. Their wives are also part of the team, as well as the volunteers. The “L” is for Lewis, one “E” is for Edward Fisher, the other “E” is for Elaine, who is married to Lewis and the “K” is for Kate Fisher, who is Ed’s wife.
Anyway, I found myself always thinking about this place. Thinking about how much damn fun those Soldiers were having. I kept thinking about their smiles and the way they all razzed one another. The volunteers who take the Soldiers out on the actual hunts and/or fishing for the day drag all kinds of gear out to the hunting blinds and tree stands (if the Soldiers can use a tree stand.) They take whatever the Soldiers need to the bank of a lake, or to the edge of a river. Volunteers are taking wheel chairs, crutches, braces, etc. The hunting/fishing guides carry Soldiers, when they have to! Some Soldiers can ride on 4-Wheelers. They do whatever the hell they need to do to get them to their hunting and/or fishing spots! They make this a fun time, a healing time, and a memorable time. Thankfully, L.E.E.K. recently was able to purchase (because of donations) these two really cool track chairs… they go over all kinds of terrain. That saves the backs of the volunteers who carry the Soldiers and allows the Soldiers to be more independent! Nice, right???!!!
I also found myself going to their website, reading more about it. What didn’t make any sense is why I would be drawn to something that had to do with hunting! I am not a fan of hunting (I let spiders out of my house, unless its winter time, then they can stay) … nor, am I an advocate of these wars! SO, what the hell? Why can’t I shake thinking about it? THEN, it hit me!!! It doesn’t matter what my political views are…. And it’s also not about whether I’m a fan of hunting.
I FINALLY FIGURED IT OUT!!! Why I kept feeling a pull. It was seeing what I had seen. It was the life altering injuries of these young Men. It was me feeling guilty for NOT doing something to pay back! What the hell took me so long to finally figure it out (I thought???!!!) I OWE THESE SOLDIERS MY SUPPORT! They deserve a week of fun, a week of “feeling normal again!” THANK GOD it only took me like a year to figure this out! I HAVE TO DO SOMETHING!
I started out small… I started out by going back to the L.E.E.K. website to see what they needed. There’s a wish list on the site. Hunting blinds were on their list. Okay… I saved up my money… and ordered them a hunting blind. I drove over to drop it off to Lewis Fisher… he was very, very appreciative. I thought “Oh, good, I did something.” Well, that must not have been enough because I was still always thinking about that place. Okay – back to the L.E.E.K. website (after a couple of months of those Soldiers still popping up in my head)… Oh, look… they have people who volunteer to make meals for everybody, when the Soldiers come out. I can cook – I just don’t cook very often.
Here comes the Lasagna part of my title… see, how I’ve made you guys read all of this to get to the Lasagna part???!!! Anyway, I make a kick ass Lasagna. That was the meal that I made. I had to take a day off of work – that’s how much time was needed for the amount that I made. I’m (now) famous for my Lasagna! I’m also getting more involved with this wonderful place. I’ve brought my Son over to volunteer. The Dice runs continue… Ed Fisher has asked if I would join the “Open House Committee”… I feel very humbled and honored that the Fisher Family thinks that much of me. Ed also thinks that I would be good at fund raising. Thought that it would be a good thing for me to do – you know, bring me out of my shell. Give me practice in speaking out, meeting people, mingling… since I’m such a shy and quite person. (KIDDING!)
Thank GOD for L.E.E.K. Hunting & Mountain Preserve. They have made me a better person. I’ve got a long way to go… but, I’m pointed in the right direction thanks to them!
It’s simple really, RESPECT FOR OUR HEROES!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

being around the Soldiers who get to come out and spend time at L.E.E.K. Words don't have to be spoken... I see their smiles.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I wouldn't make any changes to the organization. I wish that I could do more, personally... that's all I would change. I know that the organization would GREATLY benefit from having more room for more Soldiers and their Families. It would be nice if they were able to raise enough money for a bigger facility. The Soldiers would really benefit if there was more "housing" space and bathroom facilities that are designed for people who are wheel chair bound, etc.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

These guys couldn't improve my volunteer experience any more than what they already do... Honestly - they're just really, really nice people! So appreciative of everything that anyone does, etc.! But, if I should answer this question, thinking that my answer would benefit the group... I would say that they should do more fund raisers throughout the year... Like, maybe a carnival at the property... maybe we could hire the "Harlem Globe Trotters" for a basketball game fundraiser... I had mentioned to Ed maybe doing a "Black Tie Dinner" - I know that what these guys do, takes lots of money... and, they could do so much more if we could raise more money! I'm volunteering!!! Sign me up!!!!

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

I'm a better person for meeting the L.E.E.K. crew.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Makes me feel like I want to do more! Makes me happy to see other people happy!

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

I have volunteered at LEEK since it was started and it has moved me in ways it's hard to describe. I really just donate my time and do whatever I can to help during big events such as the open house and some big hunts. First the organization brings out the absolute best in everyone involved. When you help out at LEEK you're physically helping out wounded vets and there families. One specific example I can remember is a soldiers wife drove up from VA straight through to pick him up, she was exhausted. When she arrived we got her a bed to sleep in and then we moved almost all the activities for that day away from the place where she was sleeping to let her rest... This is a weird story to tell but I think it provides the best example of the overall level of caring that this organization puts into wounded vets and there families. They treat them like you would treat your relatives when they come to your house for a vacation or celebration. This is what sets LEEK apart from other organizations.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

helping me relate to wounded vets on a personal level that I've carried back to my community and given me an even greater respect for their sacrifice.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Get them more funding and help them expand.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

The folks at LEEK are top notch people who provide wounded veterans with therapeutic outdoor programs that bring these heroes back to what they love most about life.

Volunteers all, the folks at LEEK demonstrate to us just what people can do to provide these wounded veterans with more
than just talk about support -- they actually provide it, and so much more.

Most of us go around feeling rather self-satisfied by saying we support military veterans in our bumper sticker lifestyles, but the folks at LEEK do not settle for mere talk or shallow symbolism; they actually DO the work that these veterans need, and do it very, very well.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Seeing, even if through photos and stories, the impact they have created in improving the lives of wounded veterans.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

fund them beyond measure.

More feedback...

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

How did you learn about this organization?

Through the web.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

LEEK is a tremendous opportunity for commercial enterprises to contribute to a wonderful and benevolent cause. By helping injured service people regain their place in this Countries most traditional and traditional pursuits in the outdoors great empowerment is given back to the member of the service which lost so dearly giving so freely to us, the citizens.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I worked for one of the founders and know him to be genuine and careful. I know the money and motive of this group to be heart felt and its value legitimate.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Helping to better populate the general knowledge of people around the country about this group and generate larger interest and participation.

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

I am writing this about my husband, who was a Wounded Warrior. In order to try and get help my husbad resocialize, I started looking for hunting and fishing trips that were sponsored. I stumbled upon LEEK by accident. Mr. Fisher & the LEEK family have been amazing. Jim had a wonderful time & enjoyed himself immensely. It was more than the cool free stuff & the hunting though. It was more about the understanding & compassion shown to the Wounded Warriors that made the difference. My husband spoke of one instance where he had a "melt down" while riding on the bus going somewhere. In an instant, the bus was stopped, my husband was ministered to without pity or derision or scorn. His needs were met & his transportation needs were still met. He was still able to participate in the event. So many people don't understand head injuries & PTSD. These folks do. It helps that Ed & his brother are ex-military. They've been there & done that before so they "get it". They are showing understanding and appreciaton for the Soldier when they didn't get it for their service. Thank God our Nation has learned to differentiate between the Soldier & the war. It is because of people like Ed Fisher & the LEEK foundation this has happened. I can't thank them enough. Words just don't cover how we appreciate them.

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

A lot

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

I can not give enough praise to the opportunity they have provided, the fantastic setting of being deep in Penn's Woods, the wonderful volunteers, comfortable accommodations, great local food, and the stress free fluidity in logistics.

Being that I drove there myself from my home in Pa. I
arrived early and was anticipating time to settle in and stow and prep gear, but I was immediately offered a chance to hunt the last couple hours of daylight. I graciously seized the opportunity and was changing my boots and donning hunting gear right after I had parked my truck. The habitat and placement of the stands and blinds L.E.E.K. uses are superb. My guide, Bruce, and I were able to watch a family of bear that evening. We continued to see bear with regularity throughout the week and we were dubbed the "bear magnets".

The weather was cold and rainy but yet we were all comfortable, I never heard a compliant from anyone about the weather. Which attests to the healing power of relaxation, camaraderie, and enjoying an activity which puts pain aside.

We hunted Pheasant twice. For many it was their first time hunting Ring-necks. A good time was had by all, the dogs and handlers made it almost too easy for us. I was honored by having a fellow Marine Sniper, a Master Sgt, use my heirloom Browning to take two Pheasant on the second day hunting them.

The local land owners provide fantastic deer habitat and have many well placed and comfortable blinds for which to hunt from. The healthy deer population is a result of the proper management they employ. The land owners eagerly seek Wounded Warriors to hunt their properties, some are Veterans themselves.

I had missed a deer, twice, one shot at an embarrassing range. I got ribbed by all as would be expected from a bunch of guys at a hunt camp. But they didn't loose faith in me and I was the last one to harvest a doe on the morning of the last hunting day, maintaining the 100% success ratio of L.E.E.K. .

All in all the camp runs like a military operation, with only the good military facets being employed and not the B.S. ones. The high ratio of high ranking Veteran and current military personnel as volunteers may be the reason of this.

I was very thankful of the religious presence at camp also. From both the Chaplin "Chappy" and my guide, Bruce, himself a minister and both members of the Christian Bowhunters of America. Besides, Potter county has been named "God's Country" after all.

I was afforded the opportunity to guide a fellow Warrior on the last evening while he attempted to harvest a buck with a crossbow. Even though we didn't get anything, we were able to watch several doe and turkey near our stand and were humiliated by a 5 point buck that bedded 80 yards from us for a while then fed no closer than 55 yards of our stand. No shot was presented but the experience was very very rewarding none the less.

I look forward to helping L.E.E.K. in any way I can. They will see me again for sure.

Sincerely,
Sgt Jack Knouse
USA/USMC

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

Just like the Quote Mr. Fisher uses in correspondence; Winston Churchill said we make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give. I will make a better effort in giving of my time and skills. After having been on the receiving end while at L.E.E.K., I have a new perspective of the value of the power of giving.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Change absolutely nothing!!!

More feedback...

How would you describe the help you got from this organization?

Life-changing

How likely are you to recommend this organization to a friend?

Definitely

How do you feel you were treated by this organization?

Very Well

How did you find this group?

Pa Guard publication while at VA Hospital for treatment.

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

November 1, 2011

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November 1, 2011

I have been helping with the fall LEEK Preserve Wounded Warrior hunt for the past two years and have found it to be an event of comaraderie and healing for those who participate as well as those who volunteer. The sacrifices made by the brave men who are served by this organization far outweigh the time and effort we could ever dedicate to honoring them.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have handled my versatile hunting dogs on guided upland bird hunts for the Wounded Warriors and hunted along side the participants. I have seen the expressions on the faces of men who clearly thought they would never again get to enjoy an experience like they had just completed. The results are priceless.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

raise additional funds to expand the program

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