RUSKIN, Fla. (WFLA) — Lyette Reback is the founder of Believe With Me, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping families of fallen soldiers.
On Saturday, the organization went to work, giving back to Kelly Kowall whose son, army specialist Corey Kowall was killed in a combat mission in Afghanistan in 2009.
“I always tell the kids you think you get to play football because you’re good at it, but you get to play football because someone else was on a battlefield,” Reback said. “You have to remember that and give your best at every opportunity you have.”
In 2012, Kowall created My Warriors Place, and organization in Ruskin that provides refuge and support to thousands of veterans, and their families.
This weekend, Believe With Me joined forces with student ambassadors from Jesuit High School to give Kowall some extra help and My Warriors Place a facelift with new irrigation, landscaping and demolition work.
“It makes a huge difference, this place is going to be transformed in what was just an okay, is going to be beautiful,” Kowall said. “It restores my faith, it does. You hear all the bad stories about kids and when you see this happening you realize they’re not all that way, there are some good ones out there.”
Reback says one of the goals of the organization is to teach the next generation about the costs of our freedoms and the importance of helping Gold Star families.
“We will never understand the cost and sacrifice, but helping out Ms. Kelly shows we care and want to help and try to be there for those people left behind,” Lawson Mcleod a junior at Jesuit said.
People in Tampa have so far given $150,000 to Believe With Me, and Reback says they couldn’t be more thankful for another opportunity to help the Gold Star community in the greater Tampa Bay Area.