“American Sniper” grandmother Joyce Kyle of Burns accompanied her son and daughter-in-law, Wayne and Deby Kyle, and granddaughters Brintley and Leighton to Texas for the third annual memorial for Chris Kyle, Wayne and Deby’s son and Joyce’s grandson.
The event May 13 and 14 included an auction, motorcycle ride, crossfit and sporting clays competition, and live entertainment at the historic Fort Worth Stockyards.
Proceeds benefitted non-profit organizations helping wounded veterans with physical, emotional, and psychological needs. Chris Kyle gained notoriety as a Navy SEAL sniper with his book, “American Sniper,” published in January, 2013.
He and a friend were killed on Feb. 2, 2013, by a veteran they were trying to help who reportedly suffered from post traumatic stress syndrome.
In past years, the fundraiser provided money for Base Camp 40 — a five-day guided elk hunt in Colorado, Kentucky, and Texas for wounded veterans — as well as Guardian for Heroes, a foundation created by Chris Kyle in 2011.
Guardian for Heroes donates in-home fitness equipment, personal training, and life coaching to veterans with disabilities, Gold Star families, and those suffering post traumatic stress syndrome from combat deployment.
This year’s recipient is Spirit of a Hero, dedicated to providing financial, moral, and community support to critically wounded service members and their families.
Joyce and her family spent most of the week from May 9 to 12 getting ready for the benefit and setting up displays and donated items in Fort Worth.
On May 12 and 13 they were hosts for a supper for volunteers, sponsors, and guests.
More than 700 people attended for the main event and supper May 14.
“Wayne introduced me at the dinner and I got a standing ovation from the crowd,” Kyle said. “I learned so much on the trip — what they do with the proceeds and how many veterans are helped. It is a year-long mission.
“I enjoyed my trip so much.”