The History of SFTT

A 501(c) 3 nonprofit foundation started in 1998 by America’s most valor-decorated soldier, Colonel David Hackworth, his wife Eilhys England Hackworth, and a band of veterans and citizens concerned about giving U.S. warriors a national platform spotlighting key issues directly affecting their chances to win battles, survive combat and make it home alive and in one piece.

SFTT has always been a volunteer-driven organization and is governed by a volunteer Board of Trustees, with much of the work is done by Advisory Committees. This lean organization has been able to enlisted two Senate members of the Armed Services Committee to work with them as well a major law firm to work pro bono on Freedom of Information motions, all to ultimately force the Department of Defense to provide transparent testing of body armor.  SFTT also consistently reported breaking news for 60 Minutes, MSNBC, the New York Times and Washington Post and Times, provided key input for a 5-part NBC News Special on the availability of standard issue body armor and helped the Washington Times win a Sigma Chi award with a feature on VA drug abuse.

Milestones include:

• September 2016, 2017: Secured educational grants to veterans enrolled in California. State Polytechnic University’s Sustainable Agriculture Training.
• September 2014, 2015, 2016: Funded a PTSD Clinical Trial at Columbia University.
• June 2016: Secured funding for Pets for Vets ROAR Ridgefield CT.
• April & June 2015: Secured funding for Service Dog Program TADSAW in Texas.
• March 2014: SFTT supported Maj. Ben Richards’ (US Army Retired) application and the award of The Purple Heart for his invisible war wounds sustained while serving in Iraq.
• June 2013: Established SFTT Rescue Coalition of Therapies to treat PTDD & TBI.
• March 2011: Redesigned SFTT Website as an informational resource for Our Military and their families seeking help for PTSD & TBI.
• December 23, 2010: Retained the law firm of Kirkland & Ellis LLP who filed the final motion with the Federal Court in Washington, DC in the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) on behalf of SFTT for forensic records held by the Department of Defense (“DOD”)
• October 16, 2009: Contributed to the Government Accountability Office (“GAO”) issuing a report to Congress calling for “independent expert assessment of Army body armor test results.” This damning report of U.S. Army body armor test procedures was the outgrowth of a two-year investigative and educational campaign by SFTT to seek fair and impartial test procedures, including the involvement of Senators serving on the Armed Services committee.
• June 2008: Collaborated with The Washington Times in a series of front-page articles regarding combat veterans with PTSD who were enrolled in an experimental drug trial without being informed of serious adverse psychiatric side effects. SFTT also brought the controversy over mandatory anthrax vaccinations to Congress.
• January 2006: Contributed to The New York Times article by Michael Moss, “Extra Armor Could Have Saved Many Lives” stating that during the period March 2003 through June 2005,  “80%  of Marines killed by upper body wounds in Iraq could have survived if issued extra body armor that was available since 2003.”
• 2003 – 2005: SFTT Founders Col. David Hackworth’s and Eilhys England’s joint news column and media appearances spark public outrage from reports of casualties resulting from unarmored Humvees leading to corrective measures.
• March 2004: Provided essential assistance to 60 Minutes to break the story of incompetence and malfeasance by the chain of command that resulted in Abu Ghraib Prisoner Abuse.