As some of you know, I have a bit of a soft spot in my heart for our HFP Racers with a military background. Team RWB and active duty military get shout outs at every race, and they add a lot to our experience as well. We love having them race with us. With that in mind, we will have a special guest with us at the Great Buckeye Challenge on Saturday July 24 in Springfield. But that starts us too far forward – let’s back up a bit. About 35 years ago I had a friend who I also called “brother”, who was my inward and outward opposite. He was a skinny, calm little guy – I’ve never been accused of that; he was rather quiet and reserved, while I – well, you know me. We were flip sides of the same coin, and it worked. After HS I went off to college, and he said he was going to give the military a try. Fast forward 32 years, and he will be joining us at The Great Buckeye Challenge – but he isn’t the same skinny little kid I used to know.
Army Master Sergeant Dennis Gossard retired last week after 32 years of serving our country, just a week prior to The Great Buckeye Challenge, and he has chosen his first “civilian” activity to be the GBC – and to race with us!! We are honored to have him with us. Dennis is a lifelong Ohio resident (when he hasn’t been out working for Uncle Sam), and has always been a Buckeye. Before all else though, Dennis is a lifelong soldier.
His resume includes the 82 nd Airborne Division, the 108 th Divisional HQ, and Special Operations Command. Dennis has served as and supported operators and operations at forward bases all over the world, and has had sand in places we civilians never, ever want to consider finding sand.
We are thrilled that Master Sergeant Gossard has chosen to compete in his first triathlon with us at The Great Buckeye Challenge, and I am even happier that we can congratulate and honor my little brother Denny for his 3 decades of service to our country. Denny will be conspicuous in transition (I will see to that), and he will also do us the honor of posting colors for the pre-race National Anthem. If you can find the time in your race prep, please take a moment to step over and congratulate him on his retirement, and welcome Denny to the HFP family. It’s nice to finally have him home!
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