The Patrick McCaffrey
Village-Retreat for Veterans, a Reality
A place of peace, a place to heal,
a place to renew…
…. A place built by gratitude
The U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs estimates there are 275,000 homeless veterans, about a quarter of the
nation's homeless population.
19 percent of troops returning from Iraq suffer from such mental health issues as major depression, generalized
anxiety, or post-traumatic stress disorder. These conditions frequently lead to substance abuse. This population
is the most susceptible to homelessness and suicide.
As of July, 2006 18,490 U.S. Servicemen and women have returned with severe injuries suffered in Iraq.
Almost half of America's 2.7 million disabled veterans receive $337 or less a month in benefits.
|We cannot continue to allow these brave soldiers,
who were willing to suffer and die for us, to be discarded and treated like this.
We can no longer wait for the government to do the right thing by these veterans.
We, ourselves, the grateful, must finally take action.
|The foundation is a peaceful non-political, non-religious group of citizen
who are very concern about the welfare of our children returning Home
from the Middle East. We are in the process of creating a second Home
for them to Heal and connect back with our society.
|Read what one courageous mother of a soldier killed in Iraq and one small organization
intend to do about this.
Please join the ranks of the grateful and help us make a mother’s vision a reality
"Never doubt that a small group of
thoughtful, committed citizens can change
the world. Indeed, it's the only thing that ever
As a boy, Patrick overcame his teenage anorexia, weighing less than 90 pounds at 15, by becoming a bodybuilder
and leader. By 30 he had two children, a wife, comfortable home, and his admiring employer, Akins Collision
Repair, planned their expansion around Patrick being general manager of his own shop. Then September 11th
happened, and he said: “I have to serve, I have to do something.” Neither his father, a veteran, nor his mother, a
career humanitarian and hospice worker, could change their son’s course.
Assured that his desire “…to serve at home” would be honored, he joined the 579th National Guard Engineers
Alpha Company out of Petaluma. Instead of guarding a stateside nuclear power plant, by 2004 his company of 90
was living in tents in 125 degree heat in Northern Iraq.
Patrick was as admired as a soldier as he was as employee and father. Iraqi kids, without electricity, drinkable
water, and enough food, would rush Patrick’s recognizable Humvee for the food and water they knew he would bring
them from Camp Anaconda.
When his comrades were tired, bodybuilder Patrick picked up their heavy load, including the older seventy-five
pound radio equipment often assigned to Guards units. If someone were wounded, Patrick was the CLS (combat
life saver) at their side. When his guardsman complained about overwork, crap details, and lack of sleep, Patrick
carried the message to higher-ups. When a soldier was in a dark mood, Patrick would pay for his stateside phone
Patrick started Iraq with high hopes. He wanted to help the country and their “beautiful” children. But from his daily
communiqués, his mother noted increased disillusionment. From patrols, to interactions with citizens, to training
Iraqis to “replace them,” Patrick’s optimism had evaporated.
This administration has now (June 22 2006), released the official report of what happened to Patrick 2 years ago,
on June 22, 2004. Patrick was murdered by the Iraqi soldiers that he was training! From various first hand sources,
here’s what happened. Patrick, representing his fellow Guardsman, complained to commanders about his unit
being stretched thin, lack of sleep, and too many dangerous forays. Officers told him to just do his job.
Patrolling in treacherous, canal-veined high grass with Lieutenant Andre Tyson, Bruce Hemelright, five Iraqis
soldiers and a translator, that they had trained, they came under sniper fire. Hemelright noticed some of their
backup was missing. Then the remaining Iraqi backups turned their machine gun onto the Lieutenant. Patrick,
strapped with radio gear, came to his friend's defense. Bullets ripped through Patrick’s Kevlar, legs and arms.
Because a commercial airliner brought Patrick’s flagged-draped coffin to Sacramento and hundreds of waiting
friends, media captured one of those rare administration censored visuals of fallen heroes. Since that day, an
apolitical mother has publicly questioned the war and searched for a “totally new, better way to involve ourselves in
Today, fearless, French-born Nadia lives with and helps heal the wounds of her daughter-in-law, Sylvia, and her two
grandchildren, Janessa-Marie, and Patrick Jr. She is actively working in creating a Center for the veterans back
from Iraq and Afghanistan, The Center will be home to them for a while, different palliative and alternative treatments
for PTSD will be offered. A professional staff of mostly veterans will be caring for them.
For our long-term national security, we need a peaceful, productive, nation building corps of volunteers that serves
and safest country and world. We need service that enlightens us and the world, and reduces the expenditure of our
blood and dollars. The citizen-initiated World Service Corps proposed congressional legislation does that.
“...Even though Sergeant McCaffrey was relatively new to the Army he had progressed quickly to a position of leadership and
respect. He was a natural leader with his care for his fellow soldiers and the way others would look up to him for advice and follow
his lead. He was a team leader, a position he was more than capable of handling.
Sergeant McCaffrey’s contribution to the company as a combat life saver was incredible. He constantly was ensuring that all the
other combat life savers in the company had all the supplies in their aid bags and where ready.
He provided care for the other soldiers constantly and was always providing tips to ISG about how the other soldiers could improve
their health and well being When a combat life saver was called he was always one of the first, if not the first to respond.
He looked after everyone in the company, always asking how everyone was doing and helping them with their problems. Sgt
McCaffrey was a hard charger and very proactive.
His leadership has nothing but great things to say about him, and all the soldiers considered him a friend. Many of the soldiers
considered him a close friend and will miss him greatly.
Even though we are all stricken by his loss, it is really hitting us hard. He was more than just a friend to many of the soldiers, he
was a brother”.
From a close friend, a brother and a fellow soldier:
|A soldier’s tribute to
THE GUARD GOES TO WAR
Sgt. 1st Class Norman Valdez, Staff Sgt. Dennis Sarla, Sgt. Timothy McClurg, Cpl. Patrick McCaffrey Sr., and SPC Scott Aponte
were part of the four Humvee patrol conducted that night.
These soldiers are all a part of the A/579th Engineers attached to TF Tacoma of the 81st BCT.
While conducting their patrol, outside the perimeter, a report came over the radio there had been enemy rockets launched.
They discovered the suspected Point of Origin (POO) was not far from their location. Minutes later, two Iraqis were seen by a
dismounted patrol, riding a motorcycle away from the suspected POO. The Humvees maneuvered into position to intercept the two
Valdez stood on top of his Humvee and gestured for the two Iraqis to halt. They were then instructed to leave their motorcycle far
away and walk back to where the soldiers were standing and they complied obediently.
One of the Iraqis told the soldiers he was part of the Iraqi Civil Defense Corps, calling out "ICDC", also providing
identification to prove it.TF Tacoma headquarters ordered Valdez and his crew to detain them. Sarla, McClurg, Aponte and
Gonzalez approached and detained the two Iraqis. Only one had identification on him. One man appeared to be extremely nervous,
smoking excessively, while the other one remained calm and appeared to be smiling.
Sarla and his men took the Iraqis into custody. The soldiers' small group, calling themselves the Double Deuce, remained calm and
performed their duty to perfection. The team reflected the entire ordeal had been a "reality check" for them.
The detainees were taken in the gate by the Fire Support and Scout humvees that were also on the patrol. The FISTERs (fire
support soldiers) and Scouts blindfolded the two Iraqis upon taking possession of them.
They arrived back at LSA Anaconda for residue testing.Spc. Heather Gardiner is the unsung hero of this detainment. Gardiner is
trained to test potential criminals for residue indicating contact with any sort of explosive device.
These two Iraqi Nationals tested positive; one for TNT and the other for both TNT and an explosive known as RDX.Gardiner said of
her results, This test is what would convict them (of launching rockets).
She explained presenting her findings, stating I submitted a sworn statement, which my commander requested.
This sworn statement could be used in an upcoming trial; a trial that Gardiner may be testifying at. Although Gardiner's job is not
one of glory such as the various patrol groups, but without her, the work done by Valdez, Sarla, McClurg, McCaffrey, and Aponte
would be for nothing.
The double deuce team with the help of the FISTERs and Scouts did an amazing job of capturing the alleged criminals. Without the
test results from Gardiner, the team would not have enough evidence to hold and convict the alleged criminals and their hard work
would be lost.
Engineers to Infantrymen:
Soldiers of A Company, 579th Battalion Show their Strength and VersatilityLike other elements of the 81st BCT, the soldiers from A
Company of the 579th EN Bn have demonstrated their ability to be both forceful and flexible.
Although they were trained as Combat Engineers, the 579th soldiers work in security and support operations at Logistical Support
Area (LSA) Anaconda.
Sgt. Patrick McCaffrey is a team leader for the 579th, and works to provide support and security for patrol groups like the Fire
Support Teams (FISTERs) and Scout Teams.
During the patrols, McCaffrey's team occasionally runs into potentially hazardous situations.
Recently he and the rest of his team were involved in the apprehension and capture of two anti-coalition fighters. Another time,
McCaffrey and his men ran into a cache of rocket fuses while on patrol. In addition to providing support for the FISTERs, who they
were accompanying, McCaffrey and his team also escorted Explosive Ordinance Demolition (EOD) specialists back to the site.
The 579th soldiers maintained security of the area while the fuses were destroyed with a controlled blast. Although he sometimes
has to confront and overcome dangerous situations, much of McCaffrey's job involves staying prepared and on-guard.
He and his soldiers maintain a strong stance, bracing themselves to defend Anaconda against any crisis that may arise. He and his
team have also served as convoy escorts, providing security for shipments of the various classes of staple items--food, water, and
At home, McCaffrey worked at two auto body shops, where he manages 30 people.
Although he is only a corporal in the Army, his experience in the civilian world has sharpened his leadership skills, helping him as he
pilots his team.
McCaffrey and his fellow 579th soldiers have shined during their brief time at Anaconda. According to McCaffrey, their company is
the spearhead for the 81st Brigade, even though they are working in security operations instead of combat engineering. We have
accomplished everything and more the Brigade has expected of us, says McCaffrey. During the Transfer of Authority, the 82nd
(Airborne) was very impressed with us.
2nd Lt. Andre Tyson praises McCaffrey's skills and solidness as a soldier.
According to Tyson, McCaffrey has a good head on his shoulders, particularly outside the gate.
This is one of my best soldiers, Tyson says.
McCaffrey is modest, however--for him success is a result of group effort. & quote; It's not just one guy--it's the whole team.& quote;
He chalks up his company's success to hard work and training. We want to excel, he says. The only way to do that is to do a good
job at everything we do.
|© 2006-2015, Nadia McCaffrey, the Patrick McCaffrey Foundation & the V Villages, all rights reserved ©
Formed in 2006-2007, the organization is a peace based organization for
members of the military who have served in the war, we are focusing on the Iraq & Afghanistan conflicts, however, this foundation is to help all war veterans . We believe the best way to support our troops is to bring
them home now and take good care of them when they get here.