Valor Salutes

#HockeyChangesLives

Background

The Yontz Valor Foundation (YVF) will both directly, and through other like minded organizations, provide funds to help our wounded warriors re-establish all aspects of their life when they return from active duty – and for those who tragically do not return, support their families.

YVF is committed to Hendrickson Foundation as the primary supporter of the Minnesota Warriors Hockey program and strives to make a meaningful impact in the lives of Warrior hockey families.

To learn more about Yontz Valor Foundation visit them at: www.yontzvalorfoundation.org.

Our Mission

Valor Salutes recognize individuals who exemplify the values of YVF founder, Ken Yontz, and who live and promote each of these values through their lives and within their relationships.

On February 22, 2020, at the HF Hockey Festival Reception, in memory of her father Ken Yontz, Terri Yontz Miller will proudly present each of the Warriors with a generous donation from the Yontz Valor Foundation.

Kenneth F. Yontz

Yontz Valor Foundation, Founder

1944 – 2016

A Peek Inside the Life of My Dad – Ken Yontz

A personal letter from Terri Yontz Miller – Yontz Valor President

In life, people have their own interpretation of what constitutes “success.” In today’s society “success” is often associated with what a person “does for a living” rather than who a person “is in this life”. Classic example; the go-to social icebreaker when meeting new people, “What do you do?” The answer to that often defines a person and places a set labels in others’ minds – all associated with their job.

Ken Yontz, who I was lucky enough to call my Dad, was the founder of the Yontz Valor Foundation. He was an exceedingly successful businessman who reached pinnacles far beyond even what he had ever envisioned. The shaping of such a man started early in life, and is positive proof that though life most certainly will throw us “curveballs”, you can rise above if you stick true to your core values.

At 18 years old, Ken Yontz believed he had secured his spot on the road to success. A senior at St. Mary’s High School in Sandusky, Ohio and captain of the football team, Ken was fortunate enough to earn himself a full scholarship to Bowling Green University to study his passion; business. THE CURVEBALL. Earlier in the year, he learned that his girlfriend, my Mom, was pregnant and thus altered his life course dramatically. His decision to forego his scholarship, get married and raise a family was met with extreme disappointment from his parents and the entire small community where “Kenny” (as they referred to him) was viewed as a football icon with the expectation he would “make it big” in the game. He never forgot how this made him feel, and vowed he would prove them all wrong. With an empty bank account and a baby (me) on the way, he was determined to provide a loving and fulfilling life for us. He trusted then, so early in his adult life that all of the values modeled by his parents, would guide him as he embarked on this new path.

Ken had 3 kids by the age of 21 years old. He attended night school while working two jobs – the first of those jobs was harvesting in the stockyards (a job few would choose). He earned his undergraduate degree, followed by a Masters Degree. Despite what many viewed as “curveballs” my Dad never gave up. Eventually he became Chairman/CEO of a highly esteemed, successful company. Through ALL of this, there was one common denominator HIS VALUES. THEY WERE STRONG, NON-NEGOTIABLE AND HIS GUIDEPOSTS.

During my Dad’s career, he traveled the world, during which time he was drawn to visit Normandy Beach. He shared his accounts of that day with me and said, “I felt like I had been there before.” This visit was pivotal, as he was moved beyond words. From that day forward his benevolence was driven towards veterans. In 2014, he funded his own private foundation “Yontz Valor Foundation”, solely to use his good fortune to support our nation’s veterans and their families. VALUES

Early in 2016 the Yontz family tragically lost a child, my younger sister Jenny. Just two weeks after we buried our Jenny, my Dad was diagnosed with an insidious cancer. Our family then suffered the unimaginable, and unexpectedly lost my mother. Through this and within his own pain and grief, my Dad was a beacon of strength, love, and courage for our family. Being a mother myself, I marveled at his bravery. This prompted me into deep reflection and I realized how he was able to endure through the darkest of days. VALUES

Meer weeks after the sudden loss of my Mother, cancer would take my Dad. It was Thanksgiving Day. My Dad was my Best Friend. My Hero. My Guidepost. Watching him LIVE was something. But watching him die was paramount, and will live in me forever. To the very end, his values never weakened. They were at the core of his sustenance, guiding him through all life’s moments and inevitably shaping him into a remarkable man who was loved by so many.

The Valor Value Salute is grounded on Ken’s fundamental belief to stay true to your values, no matter life’s curveballs.

– Terri Yontz Miller
President – Yontz Valor Foundation

Ken Yontz’s Core Values

Individuals who through civilian and/or military life exhibit unyielding core values in the following ways:

  • Work Ethic – Continually striving to do more for themselves and others while maintaining a positive mindset, integrity, and commitment to never giving up.
  • Kindness – Displaying genuine kindness towards ALL beings, even to those who have been less than kind.
  • Giving – Showing a high regard for others’ needs no matter their own circumstance. A willingness to give one’s self for the betterment of another.
  • Leadership – Through actions, decisions and words, this person lifts others up, promotes unity and inspires others to do the same.
  • Hope in Adversity – Maintaining a positive attitude despite personal misfortunes.

Eligibility

To be eligible for a 2019 Valor Salute, Warriors (from any team, region or state) MUST be registered to participate in the 2019 Hendrickson Foundation National Hockey Festival and be in attendance at the Festival Reception on February 23, 2019.

Nomination Process

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Nominations can be made by anyone, with restriction to self-nomination. Nominations will be accepted through the website, now through February 1, 2020.

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Honorees will be chosen by: Yontz Valor President - Terri Yontz Miller, Hendrickson Foundation Executive Director - Danny Hendrickson and Warrior Hockey Program leaders.

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Chosen nominations will be bound for the selected recipients and presented at the Hendrickson Foundation National Hockey Festival Reception on February 22, 2020.

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Valor Salute honorees will receive a keepsake and a generous gift.

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In 1500 words or less, please explain in detail how the nominee demonstrates the criteria and core values defined above and why s/he should be considered for the Valor Salute.

  • Valor Salutes are by nomination ONLY and must be received by February 10, 2020 to be considered. Nominations will be reviewed by Warrior Hockey leaders, and the honorees chosen by HF Executive Director, Danny Hendrickson and YVF President, Terri Yontz Miller.
  • Cite specific examples, situations, behaviors, quotes where this individual’s values have shined.
  • Describe how others have benefitted from this individuals work ethic, kindness, giving nature, leadership and/or hope in adversity.
  • Describe how this individuals values align with the values of Ken Yontz, described above.
  • Optional: include any photo/article/document that may also shed light on this individuals strong values.

Questions Regarding Valor Salutes

Kristin Hendrickson

612.655.8777
Kristin@HendricksonFoundation.com

Contact Us

3918 Xerxes Ave So
Minneapolis, MN 55410

612-308-7575

danny@hendricksonfoundation.com

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