The Cleveland Browns have an unwavering commitment to supporting active military and veterans throughout the year. Through the Browns and the NFL Salute to Service campaign for military appreciation, we strive to reach all branches of the military through the USO of Northern Ohio, a First and Ten community partner.
This year during the Browns vs. Falcons game we had the opportunity to recognize a veteran as our First and Ten Coin Toss Captain. Retired Gunnery Sgt. Roy Wesley Brady Jr. served his country for 22 years and 15 days in the United States Marine Corps. Endearingly referred to as ‘Gunny’, Sgt. Wesley wore his Browns jersey proudly as he walked along the 50-yard line to take part in the live coin toss moment.
Those who have the honor of being the First and Ten Coin Toss Captain are selected for their exceptional commitment to the community.
Since his retirement, he's taken up a new mission as a volunteer and has recently finished walking across America from California to New Jersey. He began his trek in March and completed it at the beginning of October.
The purpose behind his walk was to raise awareness and donations to help combat wounded and mentally wounded veterans as part of the Combat Wounded Veteran Challenge.
"My goal is to focus on all branches of service, all military members from any war era to this day that deals with PTSD, trying to prevent suicide for our combat veterans," Brady said.
His journey was not an easy one as he walked through 90+ degree weather, extremely hazardous roads and Hurricane Florence. While this alone is impressive, it gets better. Prior to his 2018 feat, Brady completed a cross-country walk for the first time from North Carolina to California.
Now why, one might ask, would an individual go to such length to support others? It was a personal connection for him, making sure to raise awareness and show his support for those who need it most; like his brother. Brady’s brother was a major in the army who committed suicide last year. This is what inspired him to embark on the walk again and rename it the “Major Walk Across America" in honor of his brother.
"I want to focus on spreading awareness to communities and every town that I go to saying this is a serious issue," he said.
We’d like to thank Retired Gunnery Sergeant Brady for his selflessness first to our country and second to those who have served. We appreciate all of the time he’s given to the cause and for his unrelenting support for the team! Go Browns!
Interested in signing up your volunteer group for First and Ten? Group forms available! Click here to learn more about how to #give10
Follow @BrownsGiveBack on Twitter and Instagram and tell us what you are doing to help others using #give10 to unite us all as Browns fans. Give 10 hours, help your community.
The Browns are dedicated to #give10 through the team’s First and Ten initiative. Launched in June 2014, the Cleveland Browns First and Ten campaign is the team’s community program, established to inspire fans to volunteer in and help their communities throughout the world by volunteering for 10 hours each year. Since its inception, Browns fans have committed to volunteering more than 2 million hours to impact their communities by pledging to #give10. Through First and Ten, the Browns are the only NFL club to promote a long-term volunteering program that unifies the team and its entire fan base, with the goal of impacting every individual’s city across the globe, as well as the franchise’s local community. All Browns fans are encouraged to join the volunteering effort by signing the First and Ten pledge on the team’s website and by sharing their stories with #give10