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Jonathan Merchant and David Speights accepted a $160,000 check from American Military Celebration (AMC) on behalf of Building Homes For Heroes. Merchant received a home in 2021 and Speights and his family moved into their home on Veterans Day this year. Pictured left to right are Charly Crawford, AMC founder, Merchant, Speights, and Bill Force, AMC board member.

FORT WORTH, Texas (Nov. 23, 2022) – The camaraderie, fellowship, and stories that come out of four days of team roping and western lifestyle events are hard to beat.

It’s the why for Charly Crawford. He started the Hillwood Land & Cattle American Military Celebration (AMC) presented by Douglas Allred Company. It began as a free roping school for military and first responders. It has grown to include various ropings, a stray gathering, gala and through the years has raised $312,000 for charities.

The fund-raising efforts started in 2020 when a $47,000 check was presented to Building Homes for Heroes. The same organization got a $115,000 check in 2021 and $140,000 this year. Additionally, the Fort Worth Chapter of Brotherhood For the Fallen received $20,000

Building Homes for Heroes started after the 9/11 attacks with a mission to give mortgage free homes to injured Veterans. Through the donations of AMC, three of those heroes have received new homes and many others have been supported. This year’s home recipient, Army Sergeant David Speights and his family moved into their home in Princeton, Texas, on Veterans Day.

Members of the Fort Worth chapter of Brotherhood For the Fallen accepted a $20,000 check from the Charly Crawford and Bill Force from the American Military Celebration.

Brotherhood For the Fallen supports families of police officers who have been violently killed in the line of duty. The Fort Worth Chapter will send at least two officers in full dress uniforms to funerals across the United States. They pay for the officer’s travel expenses and provide a monetary donation to the deceased officer’s family.

“When we started the roping school, it was all about veterans for me,”

Charly Crawford

“When we started the roping school, it was all about veterans for me,” Crawford said. “When I saw how much interest there was, it was evident that we should expand and open it up for first responders. Now, we are able to help charities that support our heroes. We have had tremendous growth over the past three years and have big plans for the future.”

More than the money raised are the friendships that have come through the American Military Celebration. This year’s winners of the Military/First Responder Roping had never met until they roped together. Now, they are friends for life having shared the $20,000 win. Including the the money raised for charities, $250,000 was distributed to veterans, retired and active service personnel, and first responders.

Next year’s event will culminate on Veterans Day, November 11, 2023. For more information on the American Military Celebration, visit their or follow them on Facebook

Provided courtesy of Susan Kanode to Tenn Texas Media.

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