Valor Salutes



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:

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. This year three recipients will receive a keepsake and monetary award of $5000, all with the intent of positively impacting the lives of our nation’s heroes.

Ken Yontz

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 founder of Yontz Valor Foundation (who I was lucky enough to call my Dad) 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 “curve balls”, you can rise above if they stick true to your core values.

18 year old Ken Yontz 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 CURVE BALL. 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 this 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 knew even this early in his adult life that all of the values he encompassed would guide him as he embarked on this new path.
Ken had 3 kids by the age of 21 years old. He went to 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 “curve balls” my Dad never gave up, and eventually became Chairman/CEO of an highly esteemed, successful company. Through ALL of this, there was one common denominator – HIS VALUES. THEY WERE STRONG, NON-NEGOTIABLE AND HIS GUIDEPOSTS.

As Ken achieved success he traveled the world, during which time he was drawn to visit Normandy Beach. 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. VALUES

Early in 2016 the Yontz family unexpectedly lost a child, my younger sister Jenny. 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.

Just two weeks after we buried our Jenny, my Dad was diagnosed with an insidious cancer, subsequently taking him from us on Thanksgiving Day that very same year. My Dad was my best friend. My hero. Watching him LIVE was something. But watching him die was paragon, and will stay with 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 the remarkable man he was.

The Valor Salute is grounded on Ken’s fundamental belief to stay true to your values, no matter what the obstacles.

Terri Yontz Miller


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 constructive mindset, forward thinking, commitment to integrity and never giving up.
  • Kindness – Displaying genuine kindness towards ALL beings, not limited to others who are also kind, but 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 in anyway 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 misfortunes.


To be eligble for a 2019 Valor Salute, Warrior players and coaches from any team, region or state MUST be registered to participate in the 2019 Hendrickson Foundation Hockey Festival and be in attendance at the festival reception on February 23, 2019.

Nomination Process


Nominations can be made by anyone, with restriction to self-nomination. Nominations will be accepted through the website, now through February 13, 2019.


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


Chosen nominations will be bound for the selected recipients and presented at the Hendrickson Foundation National Hockey Festival Reception on February 23, 2019.


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


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.

  • 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.

Nominations window is now closed!

Questions Regarding Valor Salutes

Kristin Hendrickson


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