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Livingstons receive special gift through Chris Kyle Frog Foundation

By Garrett Mitchell, Staff Reporter
Published on Thursday, May 12, 2016

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Staff Sergeant Jason Livingston said he happened upon the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation while searching online and filled out the retreat application as a way to do something special for his wife, Brandy.
 

Garrett Mitchell

Staff Sergeant Jason Livingston said he happened upon the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation while searching online and filled out the retreat application as a way to do something special for his wife, Brandy.

 



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Chris Kyle Frog Foundation

"Talking to (Jason) and hearing what he said, he wants his wife to know how much he loves her. The closeness is still there, just sidetracked. I can really relate to that."

Taya Kyle

Chris Kyle Frog Foundation

 

A local Army combat veteran is receiving a special gift this weekend.

Staff Sergeant Jason Livingston, a 10-year veteran severely wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan, is being sent on a couple's retreat to Charleston along with his wife Brandy, all thanks to the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation.

The CKFF, started and led by Executive Director Taya Kyle, was founded to honor the memory of her husband, Chris Kyle, portrayed in the movie “American Sniper.” The goal of the foundation is to serve returning combat veterans and first responders through retreats, date night outs, and birthday grants.

The principals of the CKFF are based on God, country, and family by providing experiences that strengthen military and first responder marriages and families.

Founded on Veterans Day 2014, the foundation has sent 10 soldiers and their spouses on revitalization retreats since its inception with 25-30 more scheduled for 2016.

"I know what it's like to be in a marriage where one spouse is a service member," said Taya Kyle. "My mom sent me on a weekend away with Chris. It was some of our fondest memories.

“We hung out in the hotel room, ordered room service, and it was just us,” Kyle said. “We carried that for a long time. It's really that simple for couples. Just 48 hours where it's all about them can put them on a whole different path for their marriage."

Livingston is a Purple Heart recipient stemming from his combat-related wounds. He was first injured on Oct. 1, 2010 during his first deployment to Iraq. He suffered more injuries in his second deployment during a mortar attack in Afghanistan that caused shrapnel to hit him at the base of the left side of his skull and neck, smashing his head into a building.

Livingston said he happened upon the foundation while searching online and filled out the retreat application as a way to do something special for his wife.

"I saw (the CKFF) on a web feed so I checked it out to see what it had on it," Livingston said. "I saw that they had these marriage retreats for wounded service members. I wanted to do something where we could connect back together. It's not that we're apart, it's just that she's been caring for me and doing everything for me for so long. It's a different type of closeness."

The Livingstons will be spending their retreat in Charleston from May this weekend. Brandy said she is looking forward to having time alone with her husband to reconnect after years of constant doctor visits and stress related to Jason's injuries.

"We haven't really had any alone time to ourselves where it's just adult time," Brandy said. "We're at the doctor's office a minimum of once a week so not having to do that is a huge deal for us, just doing things that we want to do, not what we have to do. We haven't had that."

Kyle said that the Livingstons are a deserving family and that she can relate to what they face each day.

"They didn't get a honeymoon," Kyle said. "Chris and I didn't either. Talking to (Jason) and hearing what he said, he wants his wife to know how much he loves her. The closeness is still there, just sidetracked. I can really relate to that."

Jason, meanwhile, said he is grateful that good people still have his back even after returning to civilian life.

"For me it's very humbling just to know there are people out there who care enough to do things like this for us," said Jason. "It's very helpful. Knowing that somebody still has your six, it's a good feeling."

Read more: Greer Fire departments do the heavy lifting for Livingstons.

• Want to help Chris Kyle Frog Foundation?

 

 

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