ESCONDIDO (NEWS 8) - Active Valor, the combat veteran non-profit organization in San Diego, will host its fifth Valor Adventures of the year in Bonsall on Sunday at Rawhide Ranch.
The organization is dedicated to veterans and pairs them as mentors to children of fallen heroes, referred to as Gold Star Children.
Cash Kasinger is six-years-old and lives in Oakdale in Northern California. His mentor is U.S. Marine veteran Sam Neuhauser.
On Friday, both saddled up and spent a few hours at Escondido’s Boot Barn looking for the perfect cowboy boots for this Sunday’s Gold Rush Adventure.
Cash and Sam are part of Active Valor, the non-profit that places military veterans with kids of fallen heroes known has Gold Star Children.
“It is not that we are replacing that person in their life. We are just offering another opportunity to have a relationship with someone,” said Sam.
During Sunday's Valor Adventure, veterans and their mentees will participate in an intense challenging game of Capture the Flag. For each adventure mentors stay paired with their specific mentee so they can grow and develop as a team.
“More times than not, it is challenging for the vets just as much as it is for the kids,” said Sam.
Active Valor was started by former Navy SEAL Perry Yee in 2017, to help veterans after service.
“It is still hard to grasp the fact that you are still someone special. You are still someone that has a lot of unique qualities that this country needs,” said Yee.
Yee said Active Valor gives veterans a mission to feel needed by mentoring Gold Start kids.
“Just because they hung up the uniform does not mean they can’t still serve the community,” he said.
Cash’s mom said Active Valor and veterans like Sam help show her son what kind of a man his father was – U.S. Marine Gunnery Sgt. Joe Kasinger. Sgt. Kasinger died when Cash was three-years-old and only a few months after being medically discharged from a heart condition believed to be triggered by PTSD.
Cash said he wants to be just like his father – a U.S. Marine.
Following Capture the Flag, the organization will host a dinner for all attendees for some bonding and fellowship time.
Active Valor will also be hosting its second annual Become The Impact Fundraiser and Benefit Dinner on April 20th in Carlsbad at The Westin.