GREENVILLE, N.C., June 14, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- During a recent military appreciation game, the East Carolina University (ECU) Pirates welcomed Marine Corps veteran Taniki Richards to throw out the first pitch. For Taniki, it was more than just a chance to kick off the baseball game. It was an opportunity to represent the charity she loves – Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP).
"Wounded Warrior Project has been such a blessing to me and my husband, who is my caregiver," Taniki said. "The network of other veterans who have been through what I have been through, who struggle like I do with post-traumatic stress and military sexual trauma, makes me feel like I belong. It makes me whole to spend time with those other warriors, and they're a big part of my recovery."
WWP has served Taniki since 2013, and she continues finding new ways to challenge herself and grow. Like many wounded warriors returning to civilian life, she has set helpful goals for her road to recovery.
"It seems like a simple act, throwing out the first pitch, but it's so much more," Taniki said. "Events like this help me challenge myself and share my experience. It makes me feel strong and empowered – especially after coming back from deployment and needing the care that I did. It helps me to stay engaged in the community instead of hiding alone in my home."
The Pirates made that connection easy – they were welcoming, friendly, and made a lasting impression on Taniki.
"Military appreciation days are found everywhere, but they matter a lot," Taniki said. "ECU acknowledging veterans at their game means people still care about our wellbeing, we aren't forgotten, and we are important. It shows there is still a community effort to include veterans in society. I loved meeting the ECU baseball team! Each player personally shook my hand and thanked me for my service. They were full of smiles and appreciation, and so was I. It was a happy and proud moment for me."
About Wounded Warrior Project
Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) connects, serves, and empowers wounded warriors. Read more at https://newsroom.woundedwarriorproject.org/about-us.
SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project