Hero In The Making: Army Specialist Amanda Williams

Kelsey Kroll
Wolves Editorial/Social Media Associate


Wednesday's matchup between the Timberwolves and the Indiana Pacers kicked off the FastBreak Foundation's Operation Minnesota Heroes Month, presented by the Roger and Nancy McCabe Foundation and POPP Communications. The month-long initiative focuses on honoring and recognizing Minnesota's troops and military veterans.

Army Specialist Amanda Williams was honored during an on-court presentation for her services with the 334th Signal Company in Iraq from August 2009 through July 2010.

And for someone as brave and courageous as Williams, someone who has spent time overseas fighting for our country, the applause from the 15,017 in attendance at Target Center brought out her butterflies.

The Braham resident was still flushed from both the excitement and nerves she felt shortly following her honorary presentation but was more than grateful for the experience.

"I thought, this couldn’t be happening to me,” Williams said. “This kind of stuff doesn’t happen to me. I was excited, nervous, like I still am. It’s done and I am still nervous.”

As nervous as she admits she was, her humbleness was clear.

“There were more than butterflies in my stomach, but I am very appreciative of this whole opportunity," she said. "I think this is an awesome opportunity for any solider that has served, done their time, have returned back home and are trying to get used to being back in the life at home."

Proving change is difficult for anyone, Williams confessed she was still adjusting to life away post active duty.

"For me, I know this is definitely pretty hard," Williams said of her adjustment back home. “I want to go back, I loved my job but with a baby on the way I can’t. I have to take care of her, my husband is still active duty so he will be deploying to Afghanistan as soon as she is born, in March.”

Williams had the company of her family in friends in the suite Wednesday night and was glad to share the night with those she loves most.

“It definitely is good to have the support of your family here with you. I just appreciate this whole opportunity and thank them for having me.”

Joe Bennek, a member of the Minnesotans' Military Appreciation Fund (MMAF) steering committee joined Williams on the court to present her with a grant from MMAF in honor of her sacrifices for our country.

As part of the Minnesota Timberwolves FastBreak Foundation's Operation Minnesota Heroes Month, Saturday, Feb. 4, when the Wolves host the Houston Rockets (7 p.m.), will serve as Military Night. Also presented by the Roger and Nancy McCabe Foundation and POPP Communications, Military Night will recognize all current and previous members of every branch of the military. Since its inception, the FastBreak Foundation has donated 3,000 tickets to local military members and their families for this special night of recognition.

About the FastBreak Foundation

The Timberwolves FastBreak Foundation provides and supports hands-on programs that positively impact Minnesota youth. Through giving, education and basketball opportunities, the Foundation enables young people to make responsible decisions, contribute to their futures, and experience lifelong memories. In the past year, the Minnesota Timberwolves FastBreak Foundation and the Minnesota Lynx Foundation have combined to impact 2,565 organizations with $1,008,107 in-kind donations, 60,000 Tickets for Kids donations, 4,328 volunteer hours, 53 Heroes in the Making on-court presentations and 14 $5,000 grants.

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