Join Operation Legacy Baltimore: A Tree Planting Project To Honor Fallen Heroes

Join Operation Legacy Baltimore: A Tree Planting Project To Honor Fallen Heroes

Operation Legacy, a national week of service coordinated by the Travis Manion Foundation (TMF), aims to cultivate character development in future generations. By uniting communities for a common cause through volunteer led service opportunities, volunteers live the “If Not Me, Then Who…” mantra of TMF and lead a movement of character, leadership, and selfless service. During April 22-30, you can join this movement and help honor the legacies of America’s fallen heroes through one of more than 30 service projects nationwide.

IMG_6375Val’s dad, Pat, has answered this call to action and organized an ambitious tree planting and community revitalization project in the Irvington neighborhood of Baltimore. The event will take place on Saturday May 13 to accommodate working with the students of Mount St. Joe’s High School, who have already taken great ownership of this project. This will not be a one-time event but rather the first in a series that will take place twice a year until a total of 220 trees are planted, one for every fallen hero recognized in TMF’s database to date. There is already significant buy-in from the school community and partnerships are in place with Tree Baltimore and National Wildlife Federation to acquire and maintain the trees over time. Wings for Val Foundation is also helping sponsor a portion of this effort.

To Pat, this project is about connecting gold star families, students, and community members with the spirits of our fallen heroes in every tree that is planted; and in doing so, growing some new life into a bruised inner-city neighborhood. Stories of the fallen heroes will be told and shared through a unique tree tag with a QR code (sponsored by TagStand) that will direct people to a web page, where photos can be uploaded and shared. Every tree will be an opportunity to learn a new story and share pictures taken on the streets of Irvington as the neighborhood gets transformed.

One tree at a time, together, we can redefine America’s national character inspired by the spirits of true American Heroes still at work within us.

How you can get involved:

  1. Come out to volunteer in the actual event by registering online. You must be registered through this site by April 30th to be guaranteed a t-shirt.
    • When: MAY 13, 2017 @ 8:30AM – 12:30pm
    • Where: Collins Ave Thrift, 4020 Frederick Ave., Baltimore, MD 21229
    • Materials will be provided, just come ready to get dirty!
  2. If you can’t make it to the event but would still like to donate to the effort, submit your donations online. 
    • For every $25 donated, you can choose to receive one tree tag for you to use to plant your own tree. If you choose not to plant your own tree, the tag will be used on tree planting days in the Baltimore area starting May 13th 2017. If you choose to accept the tag, you are responsible for the purchasing of the tree, we encourage all trees to be planted on your OWN property. If you decide you would like to plant your tree on public property, it is your responsibility to seek out the proper course of action to get a tree planted in your community approved. The trees should be dedicated in the legacy of the fallen hero on the tag and please make sure to take a picture to share with us.

For any questions, contact Pat directly at

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