Westgate Resorts has stunning trip properties all around the world. However for the previous few years, the Orlando location has been a favourite. Though the resort is outstanding, one weekend a 12 months it bleeds crimson, white and blue.
This previous December, Westgate introduced greater than 1,000 army households to its property for a free weekend crammed with performances, demonstrations, and extra. It is extra than simply giving again to the group. It is private.
Mark Waltrip, President of Operations for Westgate Resorts, served 20 years within the Air Pressure – 11 years on lively obligation and 9 within the reserves.
“I enrolled in 1979 and attained the rank of Employees Sergeant earlier than being chosen for the Airman’s Instructional Commissioning Program, an instructional scholarship program that despatched me to the College of Colorado,” he stated. “I’ve accomplished my bachelor’s and grasp’s levels in aeronautical engineering.”
Upon commencement, he was chosen to attend the Air Pressure Officer Coaching College, the place he was the distinguished graduate and acquired an everyday fee as an Air Pressure officer. He retired from the Air Pressure in 1999 as a captain.
He stated his time within the military modified his life.
“He opened my life as much as the trail that has led me to the place I’m at present,” Waltrip stated. “I’ve been very lucky to by no means stand in hurt’s manner, however I’ve served with lots of the army who’ve. I’ve gained a deep appreciation for the sacrifices they and their households have made in serving our nation.”
This appreciation led to him writing and producing a tune for nation artist Lee Greenwood. A Hero’s Stroll is a heartwarming story of classes of gratitude and honor.
“It was based mostly on a narrative he instructed me a couple of younger sergeant he met on a USO tour who misplaced each legs in an IED assault,” Waltrip stated. When he stated to me, “Thanks in your service,” the sergeant replied, “Do not thank me, I’ve misplaced six of my males.” “
I believe that sums up the character of our army personnel. Irrespective of how or the place we’re served, every of us is aware of somebody who gave greater than we did, particularly those that made the last word sacrifice. That is why so many people can appear uncomfortable when somebody thanks us for our service.”
For the previous 11 years, Westgate Resorts has used the December weekend to convey the very best to those households and extra. It’s an occasion that he personally appears ahead to yearly.
“It’s these occasions and the superb work of our group that makes Westgate Resorts so distinctive and particular,” stated Waltrip. “We’re an organization based on this easy premise: Now we have an essential duty to be the custodian of trip recollections for households who go to our resorts.
“We want the very best service-oriented group members to ship on this promise, and who higher than those that freely dedicate their time to serving to others in our group? Not solely do these occasions appeal to and retain most of these group members, however they offer them an excellent sense of private satisfaction and achievement.”
Waltrip stated that, “from private expertise,” he is aware of that the majority army households can not afford the holidays provided by Westgate Resorts.
“And simply as importantly, they spend it with different army households in an setting the place their service is widely known,” he stated. “Simply consider the current friendships they made on the occasion, and the way they need to really feel once they see their children having enjoyable at household occasions. That is undoubtedly a vacation reminiscence they’ll hold for the remainder of their lives.”
To study extra about Westgate Resorts and Army Weekend, go to Westgate Foundation website.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Jessica Manver acquired an all-expenses-paid press journey to cowl Westgate Resorts Army Weekend.
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