The strong connection that Kelly McHugh and her father, Colonel John M. McHugh, shared stemmed from their love of sports. It was during her freshman year of college while studying sports journalism that she received the tragic news of her father’s death. Kelly McHugh was one of five siblings left behind after Colonel John M. McHugh was killed in action while serving in Afghanistan on May 18, 2010. 

The days and weeks that followed were tough for Kelly's whole family. Soon Kelly began facing the realities of figuring out all the college stuff (bills, tuition, etc.) on her own. That is when she heard through a friend about Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation. She was connected with the organization and given financial support towards her tuition and college related expenses. To Kelly, the financial assistance seemed “too good to be true”. 

Today, Kelly attributes her achievements to an internship she accepted with the Major League Soccer team, Sporting Kansas City, while still in school. Her experience publishing stories there and working with The Manhattan Mercury, covering Kansas State sporting events, allowed her to gain the skills she needed to begin her career in sports journalism. With the help and support of the foundation, Kelly was able to turn her and her father’s passion for sports into a career as a professional sports writer. Kelly thinks of her dad every day and knows he would be proud of her successes. 

As Americans, it is our duty to honor our fallen patriot, Colonel John M. McHugh for his sacrifice to our country. Together we can honor our country’s fallen patriots by helping to deliver a debt-free college education to their children. Begin by donating $20.15 monthly to help us reach more children of fallen patriots like Kelly.