Keely Schild is the daughter of Army Sgt. 1st Class Richard Schild. She was only seven years old when her father was killed in action during the Iraq War on December 4, 2005. “My father’s sacrifice and passion pushes me every day to succeed. I am honored he gave his life for our country,” she said.
Keely credits her family for encouraging her to pursue what she loves – designing and decorating spaces. With the help of Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation, she is following her dream of studying interior design at South Dakota State University.
“Fallen Patriots has impacted my life greatly,” she explained. “Without their support, I do not believe I would be where I am because of all the amazing opportunities they have given me.”
Keely believes she has gained the strength and to live life to the fullest. “I know my father would be proud of everything I have done, but especially of how far I have come and where I have gotten in life,” she shared. “My father made me the person I am today and for that, I thank him.”
If Keely could offer advice to another Fallen Patriots scholar, she would tell them to never give up. “Even when you feel like the world is against you – remember the future is bright!”
Keely is one of 1,115 students Fallen Patriots has assisted through providing approximately $22.7 million in educational support since its inception in 2002. Fallen Patriots aims to identify and provide scholarships to all 20,000 children who have lost a parent in the line of duty over the past 35 years.