A Veterans Day Tribute: An Evening with Brett James & Friends Benefited Aerial Recovery

Photo(s) Credit: John Sherlock

Award-winning songwriters Brett James, Chris DeStefano and Jon Nite joined Infinity Hospitality Group to host A Veterans Tribute: An Evening with Brett James & Friends that benefited Aerial Recovery, a special operations Veteran led international disaster relief and anti-human trafficking nonprofit based in Nashville, TN.

The event raised an estimated $550,000 that will be used to support Aerial Recovery’s three core areas of philanthropic work:

  1. International and domestic natural and man-caused disaster response
  2. Ending human trafficking

Heal the Heroes Initiative (Providing Veterans opportunities to experience the healing they deserve and curated opportunities to repurpose their skill-set into the humanitarian space).

Aerial Recovery’s core mission is to save lives, eliminate confusion, maximize support and accelerate recovery. The organization’s most significant activities are to train and deploy “Humanitarian Special Operators” to effectively respond to natural and man-made disasters. The majority of the organization’s staff and volunteers are veterans and first responders. Aerial Recovery’s Humanitarian Special Operators’ extensive training and years of experience working in austere environments, combined with the resources and aid of partner non-profit organizations allows for highly effective missions and sustainable projects that save people’s lives, ease their suffering, and preserve human dignity.

“I got lucky enough to go to one of their (Aerial Recovery) planning meetings this summer, and I was all in,” said Hall of Fame Songwriter, Brett James. “Having the expertise of these Special Operations guys, going in, and doing what they do, working their magic, in a way that helps other people is mind-blowing, it’s such a cool concept. They have all this talent and expertise. I’ve been doing this a long time, I’ve done hundreds of benefits in Nashville, but this is the first time I bought a bunch of tickets and invited all my friends. I want everyone to know about Aerial Recovery.”

A special thanks to the event’s Gold Sponsor, 4Patriots, who has made an incredible commitment to donate “$1K a Day” in 2022 in support of American military Veterans and their families.

“Thanks to the support of our customers — and thanks to the partnership of some truly incredible charitable organizations — we will donate $1,000 per day in support of those who champion freedom & self-reliance and those who devote their time and energy to lifting up their fellow Americans,” said 4Patriots co-founder and Chief Operating Officer, Erin Baler.  To learn more about 4Patriots Charitable Donation Pledge visit here. 

Other top sponsors for the event include AllPro Homecare, CapStar Bank and Infinity Hospitality. A special thanks to our emcee and auctioneer Jacob Walker, all of the generous patrons, and of course, the incredibly talented musicians Brett James, Chris DeStefano and Jon Nite.

Aerial Recovery is committed to providing support to those who are most vulnerable and are honored to be willing to effectively conduct some of the most difficult disaster response and rescue missions across the globe. They are proud to partner with organizations like Free A Girl, Operation Underground Railroad, and Global Empowerment Mission, to name a few.

To date, Aerial Recovery has conducted disaster response missions to hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanoes, earthquakes, and other natural and man-caused disasters in countries such as Haiti, Honduras, Afghanistan, the Bahamas, the United States, Tajikistan, St. Vincent, the British Virgin Islands, Pakistan, Cuba and Ukraine. Please visit here to see a compelling video highlighting these Humanitarian Special Operations.

“We repurpose military Veterans primarily from the Special Forces community,” said Britnie Turner, Co-Founder, CEO of Aerial Recovery. “We take these Operators, and we respond to some of the most critical missions all over the world and provide life-saving aid to people in their greatest hour of need. Veterans and first responders are incredibly effective within the humanitarian space.”

This is why Aerial Recovery has chosen to scale their Heal The Heroes Initiative significantly in 2023. Thanks to key partners such as Winners Travel and generous donors like Nikki Nitz, this is now possible. At the Veterans Day Tribute Gala, Nikki Nitz surprised Co-Founders Britnie Faith Turner and Jeremy Locke with a donation check in the amount of $390,000 which supports an entire Platoon of Veterans going through the Heal the Heroes Program for one year.

The purpose of the Heal the Heroes Initiative is to provide veterans with the opportunity to gain the healing they deserve – and likely have been searching for – during their transition from a military career to civilian life. The initiative’s goals are to repurpose and re-mission Veterans and first responders to be thriving forces for good in the world by transitioning their unique skill-set and extensive training into the humanitarian space. The program’s vision is for Veterans to be globally recognized as assets not victims.

“We prescribe purpose, not pills. We’re healing through the service of others,”
said retired Green Beret Jeremy Locke, Co-Founder & COO of Aerial Recovery.

Please visit here to watch a short video that highlights this initiative and visit healtheheroesinitiative.com to nominate or sponsor a deserving hero.

Healed Heroes are the ones who Aerial Recovery then trains to be ‘Humanitarian Special Operators’ capable of successfully completing dangerous missions such as “The Ukrainian Orphan Rescue Mission,” one that they have been committed to since the onset of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Aerial Recovery has been providing support to the people of Ukraine since February 2022. They have been working tirelessly to safeguard the transportation of orphans and vulnerable refugees from war torn areas in Eastern Ukraine, to safer locations in Western Ukraine. Simultaneously, the charity has partnered with respected international aid organization, Global Empowerment Mission, to support the transportation and distribution of life-saving aid and medical supplies to some of the hardest to reach areas. To date, Aerial Recovery has helped to rescue over 864 orphans, over 6,000 refugees and 92 animals. To learn more, visit here

To learn more about Aerial Recovery’s work, visit www.AerialRecovery.org

Heal the Heroes Nominees (L-R): Paul Klopfer, Aaron Roche, Joseph Montgomery, Ian Schinelli, Manny Bravo and Luke Dill

Aerial Recovery Team with Songwriters (L-R): Seth Griffith, Karen Lowery, Cayla Metzger, Jon Nite, Chris DeStefano, Brett James, Lauren Keil, Britnie Faith Turner, Jeremy Locke, Nathan Goggins, Luke Dill, Andrew Bidwell and Aaron Asay

L-R: Nikki Nitz (donor), Britnie Faith Turner CEO & Co-Founder of Aerial Recovery & Jeremy Locke COO & Co-Founder of Aerial Recovery



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A Veterans Day Tribute: An Evening with Brett James & Friends Benefited Aerial Recovery Award-winning songwriters Brett James, Chris DeStefano and Jon Nite joined Infinity Hospitality Group to host A Veterans Tribute: An Evening with Brett James & Friends that benefited Aerial Recovery, a special operations Veteran led international disaster relief and...