My story with The FEW started just over a year ago on a Michigan high fence deer hunt. 2 hats Ranch in MI put on 1 hell of a week for purple heart vets in memory of Billy Ray Parnell who lost his life in Nam. Ronny, the founder and I instantly hit it off. It's not just the event that will change your life but the reclaimed brotherhood that we all yearn for. My family also had the opportunity to attend a beach week for families which was exactly what we needed. We were connected and spent time with other families who are going/went through most of the same trials and tribulations that we have. We literally made life long friends. For me personally it means the world. That is an understatement. It has helped me regain the confidence that I've been dreaming of to get back and given my wife and kids people to relate too. I can't thank The FEW enough for the love and support through some of the hardest times on my life. Etiam En Pugna, Semper Fidelis to The FEW.
The FEW provided me with an amazing opportunity to spend a week trip in NY visiting the memorials and a chance to explore the city itself. We were able to meet the NYPD and first responders of when 9/11 happened. It was an experience to remember. The members running the organization did a phenomenal job treating us veterans on a once in a lifetime experience.
The FEW provided me with the most memorable careviver retreat I've ever been on. I got to experience myself again with other women who live a very similar life to me at home. Revisiting my old self and getting that reminder that I need to take care of myself just as much as my spouse is exactly what I needed. These retreats are essential for caregivers to get a break and The FEW went above and beyond all expectations I had.
This past week I attended a caregiver retreat and I was treated like family. This non profit has changed my life forever. I was able to connect with wives in similar situations as I am. Which is very hard to come by. The FEW has given me family and a support system I am able to lean on.
I didn’t know a single person from The FEW when I applied for a caregiver retreat with them, but after spending just a few days together, we are as close as family. The trip of a lifetime is an understatement. A quaint cabin tucked away in the smoky mountains of TN surrounded by other military caregivers going through similar life journeys provided exactly the setting I needed to reset my heart and soul and go home to my wounded Veteran and family feeling re energized and appreciated. I can not explain the appreciation I feel towards The FEW team and would absolutely support them in any future endeavors!
Ronny & Claudia Sweger of the Foundation for Exceptional Warriors (FEW) invited myself and my wife to a veterans couples weekend in Alabama in September 2020. They had selected a great venue on Dauphin Island with three other terrific veteran couples. Unfortunately for us Hurricane Sally decided to crash the event. The Swegers quickly changed venue and found us a safe location in Mobile to ride out the storm. Even though our activities were limited we had a terrific time with the other veteran couples. Not only did the Swegers show their commitment to fellow veterans, but, volunteered their time to the local community with clean up efforts following the storm. The FEW is an outstanding organization as are the Swegers, my many thanks for your support.
This nonprofit focuses on the Veteran and not the wounds and scars. We are not wounded warriors. We are not defined by our injuries. The FEW empowers veterans with opportunities to rise up to the challenges and take back control of our lives. They focus on DOING. They do not let veterans limit themselves based on physical or mental variations hindering a veterans ability to do or be what they want. As far as veteran nonprofits go, this is the best one I have been involved with. All the support goes directly to Veterans! Lives have been both saved and changed by the FEW!
A huge thank you to Ronny Sweger & Adam Gordon, I was recently at a scuba diving event at Ginnie Springs FL hosted by the F.E.W. and had an exceptional time.
It was fun to momentarily disconnect from the pressures & routines of day to day life and connect with other veterans. Learning scuba diving skills through project Barracuda was both challenging and rewarding. As I walk away from this experience I am grateful for both the life skills I have learned and the brotherhood I developed hanging out with these exceptional people. Thank you again for welcoming me on this trip, it was a true honor to be apart of it. You are a credit to the veteran community and you will always welcome at my metaphoric campfire!
I've had the honor to get to know Ronny and Claudia Sweger personally and watch as they continue to pour their lives into this program. It is truly their calling and passion. To be able to support this is a true blessing.
The changes they make in their brother and sister warriors is lifechanging.
Thank you Ronnie and Claudia for all you do and the sacrifices you've made and continue to make
Great organization that makes a difference in the lives of our nations heroes and their families! Help support those that lay down their lives for our nations freedoms!
This organization works hard to help wounded warriors. I know the individuals who started this organization personally, and their heart is to serve and give back to our nation’s vets who sacrificed so much.
Great veteran organization that helps our nations hero’s! Iv had the pleasure of meeting the founder, they are amazing people!
I have donated to this organization several times. Though I am not directly impacted as a veteran or a spouse of a veteran, I do know the amazing people who founded the F.E.W. and I can't think of a more deserving organization or more selfless people involved. I have been blessed to hear and see all the extrodinary things that this organization has done for these Exceptional Warriors!!
Can’t say enough about our experiences with the great people from the FEW. Always go above and beyond to make sure we feel appreciated. The ideas and plans that they come up with are memories we will never forget. Thank you guys for everything you do for our veterans and their families!!
A beautiful thing. We appreciate the love and care The Few has shown us. When we felt as if all others had forgotten the Few remembers . Keeps us moving forward one step at a time.
Excellent organization! My time spent with staff of this organization made me feel at home and that they genuinely care, which meant so much to me. I have recommended the FEW to other fellow warriors who are interested in camaraderie with out being a “show pony”. Made friends for life.
The FEW is a phenomenal organization in many ways. What has impacted me the most is the fellowship. My experience has been remarkable because I feel their approach creates an atmospheres were every one feels like family.
This organization has made disabled veterans and their families’ dreams come true. Anywhere From hunting trips, family trips, fishing trips, and all things outdoors. They make these trips happen that maybe a veteran would have never been able to do.
Amazing foundation! Our family was able to participate in Beach week 2019. The FEW gave us the opportunity to relax, make new friends, and reconnect as a family! It was an experience with many firsts that our family will never forget!
The FEW is an amazing foundation. My family and I were invited to attend Beach Week. While there we were able to relax and reconnect as a family. We experienced many firsts like deep sea fishing, a sunset cruise, wave riding, and more! Thanks to The FEW we met incredible people, formed new friendships, and made so many memories that we will always cherish.
Hearing the great work and background of the FEW, I built a couple of rifles for thier clients to use. These were built by Marksmen for Vets from donated parts and services. I hope they bring many years of use by our Exceptional Warriors.
The FEW gives vets a way to connect with people who have sacrificed so much for our freedom. They do this through fun adventures, from fishing, hunting, and boating, just to name a few. They have incredible people who work for the organization and they are all so helpful and giving to make each adventure a success. New friendships are built through these adventures and many memories are cherished.
The FEW is definitely an organization that is needed by many soldiers to help them meet people that have been through the same situations. They are able to understand and share their experiences and build a relationship, as well. The Foundation for Exceptional Warriors is a fantastic organization. It is run by enthusiastic, giving, and dedicated individuals that understand how important the FEW is to these vets.
What started out as a babysitting gig for the children of my teacher and her husband, turned into a bonus family for a lifetime.
Ronny and Claudia Sweger are two of the amazing people behind this great organization called the FEW. Them along with their three boys changed my life forever. If you have the honor of being apart of the FEW you will not regret it. Wether you're volunteering to help them, or they're volunteering to help you, it'll change your life forever. They do amazing work and they are amazing people who I am blessed to know. They make each and every person they meet feel unique and loved and I'm a better person for knowing them.
My family and I had the opportunity to spend a week at the beach at Dauphin Island, Alabama put on by the FEW. It was a chance for all of us to relax, have fun, and connect with other warriors and their families. They had a lot of exciting activities planned throughout the week from deep sea fishing to a sunset cruise. It was a vacation that our family will never forget.
The Foundation for Exceptional Warriors is an amazing organization that serves American Military Combat Vets. Our small community has played host to several families of combat vets for the past 3 summers and the experience has been incredible. My wife and I volunteer with intent to bless these heroes and their families, and each year, we are the ones that receive the blessing. The impact the FEW has had on my family as we have had an opportunity to participate and contribute to this group has been incredible.
Richard Gerbeth, Jr.’s dedication to the Foundation for Exceptional Warriors is rooted in first-hand experience. Years after meeting and befriending founder Ronny Sweger, he finally gave in and went on a deer hunt with other Exceptional Warriors. It was one of the most memorable experiences of his life.
Initially Richard resisted Ronny’s attempts to persuade him to attend because of his survivor guilt telling him, “You don’t deserve it.” During his tour in Iraq, his dear friend SPC Segun Akintade was Killed in Action while under his command. This haunted Richard to the point of hopelessness. It was not until he could accept the abundance of help available that he could move forward in his recovery process.
Richard was born in the Bronx, NY, and raised in the suburbs of New York City. He was always very close with his paternal Grandfather SSG Hellmuth Gerbeth, who was a Medic in WWII. His Grandfather taught him to shoot, hunt, and fish at the age of ten.
At seventeen years old, Richard enlisted in the U.S. Navy during the Persian Gulf War but was honorably discharged after one year for medical reasons. After using the Montgomery GI Bill to attend Westchester Community College, he was hired by United Parcel Service. He was initially a part-time worker but after five years he became a full-time package delivery truck driver. During this time his children Garrett and Ann were born. In April of 1999 he enlisted into the New York Army Reserve National Guard and volunteered for the Infantry. He was activated for state missions throughout New York during and post-September 11, 2001.
In October 2003 in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, his Unit Alpha Company Task Force, 2nd Battalion-108th Infantry Regiment was mobilized and attached to the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Infantry Division. He was meritoriously promoted to Sergeant and served as an E-5 Fire Team Leader. Five days before crossing the border from Kuwait into Iraq, his third child, Derek, was born. He did not see him for five months. After he returned home, his fourth child, Noelle, was born.
His individual decorations include the Purple Heart, Army Commendation Medal with “V” device for Valor, Army Achievement Medal, and the Combat Infantrymen’s Badge.
After his release from active duty in April 2005, he returned to drill status for one year until he was medically retired from the U.S. Army. After multiple attempts to return to work at UPS, he was unable to perform his duties due to Traumatic Brain Injuries and Post Traumatic Stress. He retired from UPS after an 18-year career.
Richard is committed to improving the lives of others. He volunteers within the prison system through his church. He has volunteered with a therapy dog at his local Veterans Hospital and has served as an assistant Scoutmaster. He always enjoyed the great outdoors, whether it be hunting, fishing, or camping. Richard is a die-hard New York Yankees fan and loves Harley-Davidson motorcycles.
Today he is eager to serve Exceptional Warriors who have sacrificed for our nation, either through service in Special Operations Command, those decorated for Valorous acts, Purple Heart recipients, or former Prisoners of War, through the adventure-based outdoors programs offered by the Foundation or in any way he can
The FEW is an honorable organization that helps bring healing to our soldiers who have sacrificed so much for our freedom. We can never repay them and the FEW is a great way for these soldiers to feel honored and is a place to connect with others through fun adventures together.
The FEW has given so much to my family. They have made such a difference in our lives with their constant giving.
I was introduced to the FEW in 2015 through a fellow veteran. I attended an amazing water foul hunt hosted by an amazing family and staffed by amazing FEW associates. In attended my second event not long after and met the co-founder, Ronny. I decided after meeting Ronny, I wanted to become part of this amazing organization. Attending an event with like minded Warriors who had been through the same struggles/battles was refreshing and I left feeling a sense of purpose and belonging. It was like being back in a team again. Ive met so many amazing people that make up the FEW, from the founders to associates from across the country. You won’t find better people anywhere as far as veteran support groups. This organization isn’t concerned with paying a CEO millions of dollars from donated money. This is an all volunteer staff whose only goal is healing and fellowship among a select veteran group. Top notch and would recommend getting involved in any way possible, be it as an attendee, a donor a sponsor or an associate.
The mission of the FEW is To provide adventures to unite, reward, and inspire those that have served together to heal together. The time that I spent with them was some of the greatest and healing times I have ever had. Something I needed much of. I will always be thankful for what the FEW did for me. It gave me rest, healing, and friends for life.
I had the pleasure to sponsor a single event with THE FEW and my life will never be the same. I was able to sponsor a whitetail hunt in Michigan and when I showed up i didn't really have any expectations and was there just to go with the flow. I can honestly say that I had one of the best times of my life and more so, it was an honor, to say the least, to be surrounded by such noble and honorable warriors that sacrificed life and limb in order to keep THE USA safe. I'm now looking to be more involved in taking care of the Exceptional Warriors that have given everything to keep America what it is today...Free
I have had the opportunity to volunteer with this organization for several years. They truly know how to create an environment for Warriors who serve together to heal together. Everyone I have had the pleasure of working with has been amazing!
I have the honor of working with The FEW on a daily basis. I get to see first hand how The FEW changes lives of our Nation's Exceptional Warriors and their families.
I’ve never heard of this organization until a good friend of mine, retired Marine Staff Sargent Shane Jelsma, told me about the incredible trip he took with his six year old son down to Alabama on the Gulf coast and fished with other vets and their sons. I learned that over 90% of their contributions are used to fund hunting and fishing trips for some of the most highly decorated vets who served our country. I was reluctant to donate to other organizations knowing that they have a high overhead. Now I feel reassured that The F.E.W. will honor our vets the way we should knowing that we can never ever fully repay them for protecting us, our nation and our Constitution.
Haven’t been on any events with them but see all the hard work that goes into what these guys do. Much respect for this crew and the mission they are doing.
I have been on a trip with this Group and can tell you that it is run by some great people. The money they raise is put back into the program to better the lives of veterans. The trips they provide at no cost to the veterans, and allow the service men/women an opportunity to unwind and talk with others about issues that others that have not served wont or cant understand. I have talked with a lot of veterans and the one thing that is always talked about that they miss the most about the service is the camaraderie/brotherhood of those they served with. So to give them these opportunities to have these connections again is priceless to the wellbeing of these F.E.W.
I’ve had the opportunity to be a part of a couple of this foundations events. It was a truly humbling and great experience to be involved. The comraderie of such an awesome group of veterans spanning many generations and conflicts left me feeling blessed by the experience. I look forward to more involvement in the future. Thank You!
These guys are awesome. Witness what they do for everyone when they bring people to my work to fly in the wind tunnel. Keep doing what you’re doing.
I went on a hog hunt / fishing trip with them . The pepole hosting the event were the best you can find anywhere. Great food great community loved every bit.
The Foundation for Exceptional Warriors is an awesome organization. I've watched Veterans heal, reunite with their families and realize there is hope and life after the conflicts of war. They take Veterans on advents from hunts and fishing, to world-class adventures, reuniting Veterans with other Veterans. They give hope when there is none!
The Foundation for Exceptional Warriors is a great organization. t is an organization that benefits soldiers and their families that have sacrificed so much to help keep America safe and free. We were fortunate enough to be a part of the Lake Okoboji event with other families. Ronny and Claudia worked endlessly to ensure that the Warriors enjoyed time with their families and new friends. Thank you Oak Hill Marina, Bridges Bay Resorts, Frito-Lay and the many local businesses that helped make the weekend a tremendous success. Thank you F.E.W. for including us in this event.
Have witnessed, first hand, a great organization with great volunteers to help our veterans!
Thanks, Ronny and Adam!
This is my 4th year as a volunteer for The FEW. I have watched this organization grow from 6 events in a year to over 40. In 2016, The FEW put over 400 Exceptional Warriors into the field. From speaking with the Warriors, before and after events, I know these are life changing activities for them. They come back from an event knowing they are not alone in their struggles. It changes them and gives them hope. We need more organization like The FEW.
Experienced first hand the incredible individuals from the F.E.W who tirelessly give for our nations finest. These patriots and their organization are of the highest integrity and put their resources into restoring our combat veterans and NOT building wealthy lifestyles.
I found out about the FEW from a family member and she got me involved. My first trip with them they took me and my whole family to lake Okoboji paid for all the gas I used hotel and food expenses. Since then I have kept in contact with some of the people I meet and now have more ppl to call my family. Thank you all so much for all you have done and love what you all have done for me.
Since finding out about the FEW ( through a fellow combat veteran ) and going on NC fishing trip I have met some exceptional people ( friends ) and have had some exceptional times. This is an awesome program and I encouage our warriors to look into it.
If you are capable of supporting this foundation in either a donation or activity where our warriors can spend time together doing something fun and bond it would be greatly appreciated.
SgtMaj sackett USMC ret.
I was introduced to the the Foundation for Exceptional Warriors (The FEW) in the Summer of 2015, by one of my brothers I served with "down range". I have attended several events with other well known "Veteran's organizations" in the past that talk a big game, but failed to deliver on providing the important cognitive connections that most Veterans are searching for post Military service.
On the trip in 2015, I discovered that the founder of the FEW and his volunteers were men of integrity and action. The FEW's mission to refresh, reconnect, and inspire our veteran community with outdoor adventures was something that was lacking with most of these other organizations. The concept of cognitive recreational therapy is impactful in a way that reinvigorates the can do Spirit that all warriors have, but may have forgotten.
Additionally, while on that trip I was asked by the founder a very honest straight forward question that caught me off guard. Ronny wanted to know what my "new mission" was. I honestly wanted to answer, but wasn't 100% sure what it was. But, I knew I had a gap in my life that needed to be filled. I wanted, I needed to be around that brotherhood that once filled my life with purpose and direction.
Fast forward to 2017, and after hosting 6 different trips, I can now answer Ronny's question. My new mission is to strengthen our veteran community by providing the challenging environment needed to facilitate personal growth. I want to stoke the Warrior spirit by challenging veterans to reach further than before. I want to surround myself with Warriors that push each other to reach the next ridge. I want to learn for others that have endured more than I could ever imagine.
The gap in my life that was missing was selfless service. I am proud to say that gap is being filled with lifelong memories and new connections in that community that has to be built.
Thank you for challenging me Ronny!
First you have to know a little about me.... I lost my leg after Iraq, on a motorcycle, 2 months after my ETS. I was kinda messed up. Ha One of The Fews, guys (Anthony) found me on FB and literally had to drag me out of my comfort zone to save my life. He and The Few never gave up on me. They got me out on my very first hunt EVER. During that 2014 Deer hunt.... it was like seeing the sun rise for the first time, my eyes were open and I saw who I didn't want to be anymore. There were people now surrounding me with all the answers and it was up to me to accept it and let them help me. I owe my life to The Few and will forever be in Ronny and Anthonys debt. I love you all, thank you. Oh and to top it off.... we all still keep in contact and I love helping them help others now and returning the love that was once showed to me.
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The FEW (Foundation for Exceptional Warriors) is a great organization that seeks to provide exceptional warriors, regardless of era, an opportunity to debrief and rebuild. It's been an absolute honor to be involved with The FEW and to serve Americas Exceptional Warriors. The FEW is unique in that it serves Exceptional Warriors from all eras, most members and volunteers are war fighters, and has a 97% turn around from donations. So what can you do? Get involved! Donate, sponsor an event, become a volunteer. Approximately 1.3% serve in the military, even less than that serve in combat. That's a heavy load to carry by so FEW. Check out The FEW, and do your best, do what you can to help The FEW reach more Exceptional Warriors!
The Foundation for Exceptional Warriors always go above and beyond to continue the brotherhood/sisterhood of veterans after our time is served. What an amazing support system for our veteran communities.
Every since I first met Ronny and he was looking for gear to take the troops out and get them amongst themselves, I knew I had to get on board. He showed that vets who have seen their own demons are the best suited to give advice and offer ways to cope to those who have come out of a zone and are still carrying their demons with them. Way better suited than any liflong bureaucrat no matter what their degree. It's non profits like the FEW I have made it my mission to promote as it is their very nature not to brag, so it's up to us to brag for them.
The F. E. W. Is a great non profit organization. They help to provide events for warriors of all kinds. Ronnie and his wife Claudia work very hard day in and out getting whatever donations they can rather it be money or volunteers anything can help. I am very proud to call Ronnie and Claudia my friends. So reach out anyway you can to help.
Such a great group of heros right here. Not only are they true heros themselves, but cater to those who are often overlooked in the SPECO communities. The events that they set up are not fly by night operations. These are legitimate professional trips that are truly great.
Life changing organization that uses adventure to unite refresh and inspire those that have served together so that we can heal together. I can't imagine my life without The FEW.
This is a truly great organization run by selfless individuals, giving their lives to help others. The differences made in the lives of veterans and their families through the efforts of the FEW are priceless!
I got out of the Marine Corps to spend more time with my family. My daughter lives 2 hours away and I get to see her every 2 weeks and when I do get to see her we never really get enough time to bond. Ronny (the founder) had invited me to a prior event, but was unable to attend the whole weekend of the dove hunt due to my schedule at the fire department. We did get to talk awhile the day I was there and he asked about my family and really connected with me. Between that and the other Warriors at the event and Ronny's associate who put together the event, I felt a comradely that I hadn't experienced since the Marines. Ronny invited me to another event since I didn't get to attend much of this one and said to bring my daughter along. He didn't realize how much that meant to me and her being able to spend one on one time in the woods hunting turkeys. The next couple days were priceless. Great host , great food , and great guides who put us right on the turkeys. It was a weekend my daughter and I will never forget. After that weekend I felt I needed to help other warriors have a life experience such as mine such I try and help out when I can and donate $50 a month. My trip was free, but it was worth more than any monetary value to me. I just hope I'm able to give someone else that experience like I had.
Great organization! They really help change the lives of our Veterans. #changingliveseveryday #thefew
My Army brother, Chris Wolfenbarger, begged me to attend an event with The FEW. He knew my struggles post-combat as we had served side by side and knew he could help me with an array of my struggles by gathering with fellow Warriors struggling as well. Since that first event, I've been on three events, headed to my fourth as an assistant and actually running an entire event this fall. This group offers the finest of trips for fur, fin and feather chasers who have struggled in one form or another from mental and physical injury from combat operations. The trips are amazing, however the fellowship around a dinner table or campfire are far more therapeutic than one could possibly imagine. Warriors walk away with a sense of belonging, a sense of pride and a sense of brotherhood not found in any institution or clinic. These events bring out the good in Warriors who would otherwise think themselves unworthy or isolated. I personally walked away from my event cleansed knowing I was not alone in struggle and that it was okay to share, laugh and cry amongst brothers and sisters in arms. This organization runs strictly on donations. There is no CEO in an office building in a pavement jungle collecting. The Board members as well as the associates are sitting in blinds, helping guide and run events and sitting around the table as like minded Warriors. I'm proud to be involved as an invitee, an assistant and a member of the FEW. The best cause in our nation is a cause healing the Warriors that defend it. Simply life changing