Save Our Soles (S.O.S)


My name is Abraham Lara. I am in transition from active duty Air Force to the Navy, in pursuit of becoming a SEAL. This request is not about me.

In the few months between my separation from the Air Force and leaving for the Navy, I took a temporary job to cover my living expenses, as a construction labor worker in the Fort Walton Beach/Destin area. I picked this job because I wanted something that would benefit my physical training and preparation. I thought I was already in the best shape of my life training for BUD/S when I started the job; all it took was one week to prove me wrong and leave me sore from head to toe.

On the job site I met 8 workers who’ve been doing this kind of work for 10 to 15 years. For them, it's not about physical training; it's just hard work. These workers took me under their wing, showed me the ropes (that I'd literally be using to haul 50 lb buckets of stucco up several floors), and even shared their water with me on the first day when I ran out. These hard-working men begin their day at 7am and start cleaning up at 5pm. Setting up rafters, lifting and mixing hundreds of 80 lb stucco bags, and hauling buckets of heavy cement/stucco up several floors all day. They do this back breaking work, every day, all year without so much as a complaint. They are family men, sending home all they can to help their struggling families. In a short time, I have been humbled by their positive spirit, resolve, work ethic, and their commitment to the job and their families. They are happy--genuinely happy--just to be working. If they don't work, they don't get paid and they don't eat. If they get hurt, they can't work, and they don't eat.

While working with these men, one day I observed one guy gluing his worn out soles of his boots back in place. I saw another wearing old soccer cleats on the job, because that's all he had. I saw them all having to climb up and down 3 flights of scaffolding and rafters all day; this includes when they need to drink water or refill their gallon jugs. Each trip up and down the scaffolding isn't easy; each time increases their chances of falling or injury. I want to help, by providing each of them with high-quality steel-toed work boots, the kind that will last on the job. I also want to provide them with 3-liter Camelbacks, so they can stay better hydrated in the harsh temperatures of the Florida sun and limit their risk exposure by not having to make so many trips up and down.

I was inspired to help by the actions of my personal hero, Navy SEAL Chief (SOC) Adam Brown, who was killed in action in the Komar Province, Afghanistan on March 17, 2010. While fighting for our country, Chief Brown saw a similar situation and need for some Afghanis, so he reached out to his community and church back home to raise money for bare necessities such as shoes and socks. Like me, Chief Brown was also motivated when one day he observed the locals with holes in their shoes, or without shoes period walking several miles each day just to procure water.

These hard-working, taxpaying, community-contributing family men would rather tighten their belt and skip a meal than buy boots for themselves or ask for help. So by donating you will DIRECTLY affect change in their daily lives and work environment; and in helping them, you will be helping their families too. I figure I need eight pairs of Bates DuraShock Steel Toe Hot Weather Boots at ($200.00)/pair, and 8x3 Liter Camelbacks at ($60)/each, for a total of $2,080.00 to get to this goal. Whatever funds raised over the $2,080.00 will be donated directly to The Adam Brown Legacy Fund. I will match the first $208.00 (10%)

Thanks for your help


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Abraham Lara 
Fort Walton Beach, FL
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