WATCH: AVET Project Founder Garren Cone Talks with Steve Wilson About Empowering Military Families
By Steve Wilson // August 12, 2023
AVET Project, a Brevard County 501c3, supports veterans and their families
WATCH: Garren Cone, founder of AVET Project, Inc. talks with the Friday Night Locker Room’s Steve Wilson. AVET Project is a non-profit that is designed to help and empower military families however they can.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – I recently had the opportunity to talk with the founder of AVET Project, Inc., Garren Cone. AVET Project, founded in 2009, is a 501 c3 non-profit that is designed to help and empower military families however they can.
AVET is an acronym for American Veterans Empowerment Team. There are no paid employees working with AVET; everyone is a volunteer.
Cone, who was injured while serving in the U.S. Air Force, became an advocate for veterans after he left the service. He retired from the Board of Veterans Appeals in D.C., representing veterans against the VA, and said, “So my Air Force career, while it did hobble me a bit, it also propelled me into what I am doing today.”
If there is an event on the Space Coast that supports Veterans, you will more than likely find Cone and AVET Project. They are very visible and always looking to support veterans in any way they can.
When speaking with Cone, it does not take long to understand why he does what he does. He absolutely loves this country and what it stands for. In fact, that is exactly what he told me when he said, “I love this country. The difference between the way people live, the freedoms they have abroad, don’t even compare to the United States of America.” He went on to say, “People, this is a very, very special place.”
It is people like Garren Cone that make this community and this country a “very, very special place.” I was honored to have the opportunity to sit down and talk with him and look forward to many more encounters.
For information on AVET Project, Inc. see avet-project.org.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Steve Wilson was born in DeRidder, Louisiana and grew up in both New Orleans and Macon, Georgia. He moved to Brevard County in 1984 and retired from local government as the Community Advocate/Assistant to the City Manager with the City of Rockledge in 2018.
Among the awards and accolades Steve has received over the years are 15 + year Rockledge Little League volunteer, Brevard Public School Jefferson Award Recipient, Rockledge High School Raider Booster Award 2001, 2006, City of Rockledge Employee of the Year 2006, Rockledge Kiwanian of the Year 2006-2007, City of Rockledge Quality Public Service Award 2008, 2012, 2017, Rockledge Kiwanis Citizen of the Year 2012-2013, Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame – Sportscasting 2015, Rockledge High School Leadership and Service Award 2016, Central Florida Humanitarian Award 2017, Space Coast Inspiration Award – 2018 and Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame – Lifetime Achievement – 2020.
Wilson is especially proud of is chairing two fundraisers in support of pediatric cancer research through the St. Baldrick’s Foundation in honor of Merritt Island resident Julie Spurlock that raised over $25,000.00.
He has been a partner, along with Orville Susong, for the past 24 years with the Friday Night Locker Room, a broadcasting team that covers and reports on a wide variety of local events that are of significance to the residents of the Space Coast and beyond. Their mission is to promote youth sports, support first responders and law enforcement personnel, and showcase community and charitable events that are produced by our nonprofit partners in central Florida.
The Friday Night Locker Room has awarded hundreds of sports achievement plaques to Brevard County student-athletes over the years. They have also awarded more than $18,000 in academic scholarships to Brevard County high school seniors.