SOURCE: Howling Wolf Ranch

Sacrifices of wounded warriors honored at Howling Wolf Ranch

January 11, 2011 17:52 ET

Former Wall Street Banker Honors Wounded Warriors

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - January 11, 2011) - While America welcomes its troops home from wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, one man has gone a bit further in honoring the sacrifices made by our warriors. On July 4, 2010, retired Wall Street executive Bill Cohen, a resident of San Diego County, opened his Howling Wolf Ranch in Livingston, Montana to recently wounded servicemen. Cohen's 520-acre ranch serves as a place of rest and recovery for wounded servicemen making the transition to life outside the battlefield.

Helping our wounded warriors
Cohen welcomed three groups of wounded warriors to his Ranch in the summer of 2010. Each group enjoyed a six-day visit, during which they spent time fly fishing, horseback riding, trap shooting, hiking, riding ATVs, playing pool and relaxing at the mountainous ranch. His program draws servicemen from three major military hospitals -- Balboa Naval Hospital in California, the Brooke Army Medical Center in Texas and the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C.

Says Cohen, "I probably get more from the program than they do. The attitude of these men inspires me. For example, there was an Air Force major by the name of Doug Rink. He had lost a leg. When we went horseback riding I was concerned about him but Doug just said, 'I'm in.' So, we put him on the best horse. I was the front lead, he was behind me. Suddenly, I heard from behind me, 'Aw damnit.' I looked back and Doug's prosthetic leg had fallen off. Instead of it turning into a tragedy, everyone laughed. He laughed hardest of all. We stopped, he put his leg back on and we finished the ride. It was an amazing experience."

According to those who have visited the Ranch, it is a sorely needed respite after active duty during wartime.

Major Garrick Rard, a U.S. Marine who was recovering in Balboa Naval Hospital prior to visiting the Ranch, said, "I can't remember when I have felt so stress free. I had a wonderful time." In another situation, Cohen had taken a visiting group of warriors to the area's largest local rodeo. All 5,000 in attendance stood and cheered the warriors as their names were announced. "It made them feel their sacrifice was appreciated," said Cohen.

A history of giving
Prior to establishing the Howling Wolf Ranch, Cohen -- a Cal State Fullerton alumni who made good on Wall Street -- worked with the Make-A-Wish Foundation from 1997 to 2003. During that time he brought seriously ill children and their families to enjoy a previously owned ranch, located in Whitefish, Montana. Later, when he learned of the large numbers of wounded servicemen returning from Iraq and Afghanistan, he opened his Howling Wolf Ranch and began working to help wounded warriors.

"There are roughly 20,000 wounded military. So long as this country has wounded warriors, Howling Wolf Ranch will remain open," says Cohen.

Keeping the Ranch open is expensive and fundraising efforts for the year 2011 are underway. Cohen hopes to host more groups in the coming year including a group of wheelchair-bound warriors and a group for wounded service women.

Says Cohen, "In 2010, we received a sizable donation from the Nice Guys Foundation, headed by retired Marine Colonel Jack Kelly. They paid for all the Marines that visited. That helped out a lot. We also received a significant donation from an old Wall Street friend. Of course, we welcome donations and volunteers for the coming year."

To donate to the Howling Wolf Ranch Foundation, visit howlingwolfranchfoundation.com.

Contact Information

  • Contact:
    Laurie Stevens
    (951) 275-1000

    Bill Cohen
    Email Contact