I have been working to raise money for America's Wounded Warriors with my Team of Volunteers since 2008, and we ask that you consider making a donation that will benefit our wounded. Your gift will support life-changing programs that empower, employ, and engage America’s injured veterans. Thanks to the generosity of people like you, warriors and their families will never pay a penny for these important services.
History of Team Minnesota - WWP
Army Captain Matt Cavanaugh, a 2 Deployment Iraqi War Veteran, & Tom Cocchiarella, a USAF Cold War Veteran, started WWP Team Minnesota in September 2008. Tom & Matt become good friends as old fashioned "Pen Pals" during Matt's two tours in Iraq during the first & third years of the war. Later, Matt had just visited a friend and NCO who was severely wounded by an explosion in 2006 and discovered the work that the Wounded Warrior Project was doing to help this Soldier and his family. WWP Team Minnesota was born, and in the first 5 years we raised $245,000.00 in support of WWP efforts. With many more wounded since, and knowing the long term rehabilitation needs, we continue our quest to help our Wounded Warriors as all Volunteer fund raisers! While our fundraising helps all Wounded Warriors and their families across the United States, we try to keep a strong focus on Minnesota's 1600+ Veterans registered with the Wounded Warrior Project. We are proud to also help host Soldier Ride on an annual basis since 2017, providing volunteers to staff the route and encourage & cheer on the WWP Soldier Riders!
In January of 2009, the St. Paul Winter Carnival was about to crown a new Royal Family and "Vulcan Krewe", when Tom was introduced to Vulcanus Rex (Joe Vogel). Joe, himself a Marine Veteran, asked his Krewe to 'Adopt WWP as their primary charity" and we have been working together as a team since! This team has come together to build awareness for WWP Programs & Services, as well as raise a significant amount of money for the WWP Programs to operate.
We are very proud that our events have been put together by all volunteers, with donated facilities; services, products, food, etc. so that 100% of the funds we collect are donated to WWP to help our wounded and their families!
Links about WWP and our Team Minnesota Wounded Warrior Project work:
Star Tribune Story on Matt & Tom WWP efforts on 4/1/09
NPR's "The Story" - 30 min Radio program - about Matt & Tom & the TransRockies Run
3 Minute Video on WWP and what funds do
WWP Home Site
In Memory of Todd E. Johnson
In Memory of Edward A. Kuntz (Army WW II - EOD)
In Memory of Andrew H. Anderson (Navy)
In Memory of Richard (Dick) Clarke (Marines - Combat Wounded - Vietnam)
In Memory of Marie E. Donahue (Gold Star Mom - Son/Vietnam)
In Memory of Charles L. Steffl (Korean War Veteran)
In Memory of Frank Cocchiarella (Army WWII, Korea, Vietnam)
In Memory of Mariano (Marty) Cocchiarella (Navy WWII)
In Memory of Luigi Cocchiarella - (Navy)
In Memory of Joseph E. Cocchiarella - (Korea, Army)
In Memory of Matthew Cocchiarella - (US Marines)
In Memory of Jim Cocchiarella - Army (SHAPE-NATO)
In Memory of Frank Yarusso - (US Marines)
In Memory of Jacob John Jordan Sr. - (WW II Navy Veteran)
In Memory of Richard R. Lensing - (Veteran)
In Memory of Michael P. Schwingle - (Vietnam, Marines)
In Memory of Virgil Brickzen - (WWII, Army Air Corps)
In Memory of Chuck Haskins - (Veteran)
In Memory of James Durning - (Veteran)
In Memory of Thomas Steiner - (US Army)
In Memory of Christopher E. Edstrom - (Veteran)
In Memory of James F. Kadlec - (US Army, Vietnam)
In Memory of Eugene Nels Edstrom - (US Army Air Corp, WWII Pacific)
In Memory of Richard (Dick) J. Thomas - US Air Force & Army
In Memory of Philip James Ellingson
In Memory of Mark Eide - US Navy
In Memory of Andy Allen - US Army, WWII Europe
Sports Team Donations:
Thomas Jefferson H.S. Football Team, Bloomington, MN
John F. Kennedy H.S. Football Team, Bloomington, MN
Carleton College Football Team, Northfield, MN
Minnesota Wild Hockey Club, St. Paul, MN
Willmar WarHawks Hockey, Willmar, MN
Please contact Tom Cocchiarella at [email protected] with any questions,
to make a donation, or to become a sponsor for our next event!
Minnesota's 3rd Annual WWP Soldier Ride!
Friday July 12th St. Paul Ride Started at the steps of the State Capital at 9:00 am
Route Map Here:https://www.bikemap.net/en/r/4905831/
Saturday July 12th Woodbury Ride Started at the Woodbury Veterans Memorial at 9:00 am
Route Map Here:https://www.bikemap.net/en/r/4384333/
We welcome everyone to come out along the routes and cheer our Wounded Warriors as they ride together with Police and Fire Department support. Watch for the 4th Annual event set for July 2020!
Past Events & News Section
2nd Annual Soldier Ride - Completed on July 13th & 14th 2018!
About Soldier Ride:
Soldier Ride ® is a Wounded Warrior Project (WWP) physical health and wellness program that empowers wounded veterans to become well-adjusted in body, receiving the care they need to maximize rehabilitation and live active and healthy lives.
(Adaptive bicycles were provided and adjusted to meet each Wounded Warriors unique needs)
Day 1 Ride 7/13/18 - Started at the State Capital
Thanks to the St. Paul Police & Fire Departments and MN Highway Patrol!
Day 2 Ride 7/14/18 - Started at Woodbury City Hall
Thanks to the Woodbury Fire & Police Departments!
Watch this KSTP TV Video:
Our 1st Annual Soldier Ride was held on July 28th & 29th 2017!
MN Wild Head Coach Bruce Bordeaux Interview about WWP on Friday afternoon at Sled Hockey: http://kstp.com/sports/wounded-warriors-project-bruce-boudreau-minnesota-wild/4556718/
Thanks to everyone who supported our 10th Annual WWP Team Minnesota Gala on March 31st, 2019!
Thanks to our Volunteers, Supporters and all friends of WWP!
Special Thanks to:
Jimmy's Event Center
Please contact Jessie Carzoli at: [email protected] any questions or for information on hosting your own event!
Our 2019 Gala Sponsors!
Jimmy's Event Center
Jimmy's Food & Drink
Cataract Lodge Af & AM
Minnesota Masonic Charities
Fragneto's, Inc. IT
Lifelong Wealth Advisors
CCM Property Solutions
Mary Cocchiarella - brigadoon Realty
Cornermark Design, Art & Marketing Services
IRIS Computer Consulting
St. Paul Vulcans 2009 Krewe
Quilts of Valor Ladies
Culvers - Sun Ray & Hudson
HyVee - Oakdale
Devon Worley Band
Many contributors made donations so that Wounded Warrior Family members could attend our benefit at no charge, as well as Army, Air Force, Navy or Marine Cadets who were about to enter Active Duty. Each $65 donation allowed us to invite one of these as Sponsored Guests! Thanks so much to so many of our generous supporters/donors!
WWP - Team Minnesota
9187 Cambridge Road
Woodbury, MN 55125
Please contact Jessie Carzoli at WWP: [email protected] with
questions or for information on hosting your own event!