Warrior Games Competitors Pay Tribute

Warrior Games VA Visit

By Army Sgt. Jason Goselin 

Competitors from the 2024 DoD Warrior Games made a personal visit to the Veterans Affairs Community Living Center that serves over 400,000 veterans in Orlando, Florida, June 20, 2024. 

The trip was organized by members of the Warrior Games leadership and VA administrators to highlight the connections between past and present service members and veterans, spanning the nation’s conflicts dating back to World War II.

U.S. Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Pierre Sturgis, an athlete for Team Marine Corps, shared his story with a group of veterans at the VA Community Living Center, many of whom have had similar experiences to him. 

“We spoke to the veterans at the Orlando VA Hospital about adaptive sports,” said Sturgis. “We saw a lot of smiles on their faces and hopefully helped them realize that regardless of their injuries or current condition, they can continue to live an active and fulfilling life.”

There were nine athletes in total, representing many of the teams competing at this year’s games. Team Air Force’s retired Senior Airman Colin Pappas, another athlete, spoke about his recovery process from cancer, and the ways he continues to push forward. 

“It was incredible seeing the joy and the hope those veterans had by seeing us,” Pappas said. “We’re a different demographic, but we have the military in common and the camaraderie. It just shows we’re all in this together.” 

Lance Cpl. Noelle Delgado also shared her story with the group and reflected on the event afterward. 

“It was a beautiful event that let us speak about what we do with the Warrior Games and how it’s changed our lives,” said Delgado. “I loved not just telling my story, but hearing the stories of my peers, and meeting all those men and women who also served and related to us regardless of the age gap.” 

The bondage between the residents at the Orlando VA Hospital and competitors from the Warrior Games hinged on the characteristics of commonality and perseverance.