Vote for Applebee’s Hometown Hero
With hundreds of nominations received, it was difficult for us to narrow our search for Applebee’s Hometown Heroes down to just 15 semi-finalists. As longtime supporters of our troops, TEAM Schostak Family Restaurants would like to thank all of our nominees, as well as the brave men and women they have served with, in their selfless pursuit to protect our freedom and country at-large.
Please vote below for your Applebee’s Hometown Hero! The Top 5 individuals with the most votes as of 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, July 9, 2017, will receive our prize package of a $250 Visa gift card and $250 Applebee’s gift card.
If you’d like a bit more information on our candidates, please see below!
Meet Our Veterans
Ron Reed – Taylor, MI
Ron was a Sgt. in the Marine Corps and did 2 tours in Vietnam Nam. He has donated 26 gallons of blood and his still donating. He is a very patriotic person and loves his country. When he is asked why he donates blood he says for the sugar cookies. He will always be my hero.
Harret Austin – Westland, MI
My husband, Harret Austin, spent 10 years in the United States Army and deployed overseas 3 times. He has sacrificed so much and I have never heard him complain. He is proud to have served our country faithfully and he continues to serve our communities after being honorably discharged. Harret served as a Detroit Police Officer for 6 years following his military service, and now serves in his current occupation as a federal officer. Harret always puts everybody else first and I couldn’t think of a more perfect recipient of the Applebee’s Hometown Hero Award. He is the most kind-hearted, generous man I know, and our children and myself are so blessed to have him in our lives. He truly is a beautiful person who served our country with so much pride!
Danny Greenwood – Monroe, MI
My husband loves his country, and above all else, desired to serve. Danny is a Hometown Hero who served for 3 years at Fort Campbell, KY. Upon completing a 9 month combat tour in Afghanistan, he decided to come home to Monroe, enroll in school, and pursue a career with Michigan State Police. Danny cherishes his memories and lessons from the army, keeping veteran affairs close to his heart. He is an active member at the local VFW and a member of Military Families of Monroe County, a non-profit group that focuses on assisting local veterans and their families from Monroe. We are so proud, and thankful every day for his experience and time served.
Ralph McIntyre – Clinton Township, MI
He served honorably in World War II and received the Bronze Star, among six other medals. He bravely put his life on the line to fight in World War II. His participation in the war was front line fighting. He fought in Germany and then was sent to the Philippines for a few months, before being discharged April 17, 1946. To this day he is still a wonderful American and helps out however and wherever he can. He is 92, married for almost 69 years, father of 2 daughters, grandfather of 7 and great-grandfather of 14. He has more energy than people half his age. It amazes me to see him get down on the floor to play with his great-grandchildren. A really good guy who never leaves a person without making them smile! I know this would mean the world to him. He has always been there for anyone who needs anything and this would really be a nice way to show him appreciation for all he has done for not only our family but also our country.
Thomas Harris – Lansing, MI
My cousin has fought for OUR country twice abroad. He has been an active military member since he was a teenager, freshly graduated from high school. He comes from a long line of military servers in our family, including both his parents. He is such a positive, loving, strong in spirit, standup person to everyone around him that it makes us all so proud to even know him! He is such a positive person that recently he needed a liver transplant, that he remained hopeful and upbeat the entire way! I am so very proud of him! He is truly one of my heroes, and I would appreciate if he was one of yours too!
Chris Ochs – New Boston, MI
Chris is the definition of a small town hero. He grew up in New Boston, Michigan, and joined the army right after graduating in 2009. While at high school, he was active in the student counsel, track, and many clubs. He traveled around the world with the army and fought for this country. While deployed, his tank was hit and he ended up fighting for his life. He came back to his home town, New Boston, and his strength is something that we all look up to. He lost the use of his legs but he is still as strong-willed and full of kindness as he ever was.
Gerald Tamm – Sterling Heights, MI
After fighting in the Vietnam war he is involved with Boy Scouts and helps the less fortunate even helps people fix up their houses.
Pat Hannah – Wyandotte, MI
Not only was Pat a member of our armed forces but even after his service was over he didn’t stop there. He has done so much to help our vets by finding them jobs and helping them finding medical care and he makes sure they have things that others of us take for granted such as food and help with paying their utilities. He is my hometown hero and so deserves this honor.
Chet McLeod – Detroit, MI
My Uncle Chet is my Hero. He served in the Vietnam War and when he came home he became a counselor to Veterans. His counseling helped so many veterans sort through what happened to them during the war and helped them to heal. He is my hero because he re-lived the war on a daily basis but knew his counseling and his ability to relate to what they were dealing with was more important than his own healing. I am so proud of everything he has done for veterans both during the war and after. He is my hero and that of many vets he has helped.
Wayne Jacobs – Lapeer, MI
Voted 2017 Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year Award. Member of the Michigan Veteran Trust Fund Committee assisting veterans through short term financial crisis. Member/volunteer of the Lapeer VFW. Coordinates with Home Depot to build wheel chair ramps on the homes of disabled veterans. He coordinates placement of flags on the graves of every veteran throughout Lapeer County on Memorial Day. Volunteers during Poppy sales to raise funds for veteran support programs. Trustee of the 40 et 8, Voiture 1536 and nursing scholarship program. Volunteers for The Lapeer VFW, The 40 & 8, the Lapeer Chamber of Commerce and the Viet Nam Veterans Association. Wayne is helping to bring The Wall of Remembrance to Lapeer for the third time. Collects toys and funds to provide holiday meals and gifts for local families. Member of the Lapeer county 50th anniversary Vietnam Commemoration Committee. Lifetime member of the Vietnam Veterans of America 287. Assisted local woman to have her father’s Military plaque mounted on his memorial stone and a military tribute at the gravesite. Volunteer for Operation Care Package, helping send care packages to troops overseas
Glenn Ream – North Branch, MI
2016 Lapeer Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year Nominee. Glen has been a member of the Lapeer American Legion Post 16 for 23 years. Educating service clubs, and student groups about the Vietnam war and veteran’s related issues sharing his own story. Instrumental in bringing the “The Moving Wall” (a replica of the Vietnam Memorial wall) to Imlay City and Lapeer. Key organizer of the annual Memorial Day parade and the annual Veteran’s Day Memorial event at Veteran’s Park. Officer and Member and of the Vietnam Veterans of America #287. Volunteer at the Agent Orange Quilt of Tears event at the American Legion. Organizes color guard and military presentation for local parades for over 10 years. Co-Chair for the Lapeer County 50th Vietnam War Commemorative Committee. Assists veteran organizations to supply food packages for families at Christmas. Organizes various dedication ceremonies for Veteran related parks, monuments etc. Participates in the local VFW Flag disposal program. Glen works with the local veterans administration to provide assistance whenever needed for a local vet. Participates in placing flags on veteran grave sites throughout the county on Memorial Day.
Christopher Fountain – Redford, MI
Chris grew up with no family and joined the service because he found out he was going to be a father and was going to do what he could for his son. He served in OEF 7&8 and became disabled/ suffers PTSD. Recently, he bought ear plugs for the veteran neighbors for the heavy firework nights. He carries bottles of water in the van to give to homeless. Currently, he can’t afford a lawn mower and the city has given him over his monthly pay in fines but still helps the other neighbors around him to keep their yards clean and so they don’t end up in the same situation. He always says they taught me how to put the uniform on but not to take it off. He misses very much being in combat. (He was a combat engineer) It’s been a hard adjustment but he is still My Hero and my children too. He is humble and says that he didn’t give as much as some of his battle buddies and he feels guilt for that, but he risked his life to give some children a school, people more freedom and he fought for the USA. He is a HERO.
Ronald Wilcox – Muskegon, MI
At 81, Ron still volunteers many hours in our community through the VFW. Over the years, he has and continues to help organize the Muskegon downtown Memorial Day Parade. Every Memorial Day you will find him at the cemeteries a few days prior putting flags on the fallen. Ron is part of the Honor Guard and attends the services of Vets as they pass. He is a long-time member of the local 446. Ron “works” many Steak nights, Fish Frys, Burger Nights & etc … to continue to help raise funds for the club. He has involved his children and grandchildren who often volunteer with him. Ron inspires others to volunteer.
Anthony Villarreal – Adrian, MI
I am nominating my husband because he served in the army for 8 years with deployments to Afghanistan. Upon completion of his military service, he felt his job was not complete and wanted to continue his service towards his country. He achieved his firefighter and EMT license and continues to provide for his community by helping those in need. I cannot think of anyone better who deserves such recognition for all the hard work he has done and continues to do every day.
Kevin Grady – Olivet, MI
Senior Master Sergeant Kevin Grady has served as an active duty member of the U.S. Air Force and currently as an Air National Guard member of the 110th Attack Wing in Battle Creek, Michigan for the past 30 years. He has been stationed in New York, Japan, England, Germany, North Dakota as a security forces member and part of deployments in support of Desert Shield/Desert Storm. Since coming to Battle Creek, he has served with the Security forces squadron and also held the position of First Sergeant. Kevin has had numerous deployments to Iraq and Saudi Arabia in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom. While in Iraq, he took school supplies/backpacks donated and sent to him from Olivet’s Fern Persons Elementary students and gave them out to local Iraqi school children. He brought that world closer to our school kids and taught them to appreciate what they have, including his own children. He’s made so many personal and family sacrifices for his country that make him a hometown hero.