GREAT ICS Chili Cook Off Benefit for Greg Caron

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From our own Ride Captain – Michael Freedman

What a day yesterday huh kids? All of the ICS cooks coming together to help a great young man, Greg Caron. Over $8,000 was raised in 4 short hours. So many stories to tell from that short time period. I never wanted the focus to be on Kat or I….it was all about Greg Caron and all of our wonderful cooks and judges. What an absolutely beautiful day for everyone. Not one person didn’t have a smile on their face..all day! Thanks to all of you for all of your help and support. I hope we did Greg and the ICS proud.

For one really incredible day, ICS cooks came together to help an injured Marine that needed our special brand of help. We had a few ICS World Champs cooking ,5 rookies, and a total of 32 cooks from 8 different states. Kat and I never wanted any of the focus to be on us for setting up this event in under 8 weeks.

The focus was certainly on Greg Caron, a Marine that was wounded on 11-11 and is now learning to walk again on “new” legs. The focus was also on every one of the 32 cooks and their efforts for Greg. There were a few glitches here and there, however, I don’t think anyone noticed except me.

Mike and Mary Alice Kropp should be commended for all of their hard work in the tightly run judging area. I only went in the judging area once at the judges meeting to thank the judges I had recruited. They should all be proud of their hard work as well.

A few noticeable items for you. We were joined by Gary and Doreen Caron, Greg’s parents and his twin brother Jon. They were blown away by the dedication of the ICS cooks. They said that everyone they spoke with was so friendly and giving. I personally met so many military folks.They were thrilled that our community came together to help Greg.

We had well over 1,000 people attend an indoors event. One man came up to me at one point and said,” I don’t any special recognition”. He handed me a wad of bills then left. I opened it…and found 10 $100 bills and would have fainted if not for the support of one of our really big Air Force friends. For me…one of the most special moments was when my son-in-law placed 3rd in Verde…I don’t know who was more surprised, he or I.  I guess he listened to the old man after all.

Greg Caron Regional Chili Cook Off OFFICIAL results:

Salsa
3rd Steve Stark MA
2nd Roxanne Ballachino CT
1
st and representing the Greg Caron Regional Chili Cook Off at the 2012 WCCC Linda McGrath CT

Verde
3rd Michael Scheidel Rookie cook CT
2nd Dean Harvery MA
1st and reperesenting the Greg Caron Regional Chili Cook Off at the 2012 WCCC Scott Navaroli from MA

Red
3
rd Ghon Eckely VA
2nd Vicki Tankis MA
1st and representing the Greg Caron Regional Chili Cook Off at the WCCC Marc Frechette CT

All of the cooks donated their winnings back to the Greg Caron Family Foundation.

Thanks to Mike and Mary Alice Kropp for all of their help as chief judge and score keeper.

Lastly, sincere thanks to all of the cooks that made this special day possible.  Thank you to the Connecticut Patriot Guard for all their attendance and support.  Proud to be a part of such a wonderful group of people.