These events bring such joy and so many smiles to special people that I couldn’t imagine not doing them.
Adam spent his youth in a small Ohio town where he graduated high school with 38 of his closest friends. He wanted to be a cop, and after having several short term jobs, entered law enforcement where he spent ten years as the administrator of county and municipal jails. His special passions, however, are motorcycle and Rain Man Charities, which he founded a few years back. Adam's girlfriend Briana is working on her masters in psychology and hopes to work for the federal penitentiary system when she finishes graduate school. Briana will join Adam on the cruise.
Rain Man Charities is the umbrella name for several charitable ventures that Adam runs, and it got its name because every time Adam set up a major event, it seemed to rain. That, however, did not dampen his enthusiasm or determination. One of Adam's organizations is called Operation STAT, or Standing Tall for American Troops. As a motorcycle enthusiast, Adam tries to combine his love of riding with his charitable work, and in 2011 he organized a motorcycle odyssey with stops at VA hospitals along the way. They initially held a vigil for lost soldiers at a national cemetery and then visited patients at VA hospitals with spinal cord injuries, many of whom had not had visitors in weeks or even months. The ride was so heartwarming and successful that for Christmas, Adam's group arranged to prepare Christmas stockings for the patients. They prepared 60 stockings and goodie bags and brought them floor-to-floor to the vets. Last year, to the great delight of the vets, they brought over 700 stockings and had 120 volunteers visit them, and this year they expect to have over 3000 stockings for VA hospitals in their state. They are hoping to make this a national event every year at all 152 VA hospitals nationwide.
Among many other activities like Operation STAT, Adam supports the Special Olympics, vets returning with PTSD, and Viet Nam vets through charitable poker tournaments and motorcycle runs. In fact, in September Adam managed to have 40 veterans from the local VA hospital transported to BrimfieldBrimfield, Ohio for a Vietnam Veteran Welcome Home parade, a welcome home that was long overdue. Thousands lined the streets and cheered these vets for their service. One vet thanked Adam profusely and admitted: "I never thought this day would happen. Thank you for recognizing what we did." Says Adam: "Seeing the joy in his face and the appreciation of all the other vets makes it all worthwhile. It only goes to show that even small gestures can make a big difference."