Team BVA serves as the Association’s premier outreach program for blind and low-vision veterans adjusting to sight loss via peer-inspired adaptive recreation activities, integrated community support, and whole health rehabilitation—empowering dignity, independence, and self-worth.

Team BVA Event Registration

Team BVA Event Registration (WEB)

Team BVA Committee

Kenneth Asam, Chair
Tina Lemus, Vice-Chair
Brian Harris
Emmanuel Caddy
Gerard Valdez
Lonnie Bedwell, Strategic Advisor

Contact Team BVA


Phone: (202) 371-8880

Stories of Past Events

2020 Steamboat Springs (STARS)

In January 2020, eight members of Team BVA went to the Steamboat Adaptive Recreational Sports (STARS) winter program for three days of skiing and snowboarding. They stayed in the new STARS Ranch facility and each veteran had two instructors to assist them in learning to ski, snowboard, or simply improve the skills they already possessed. Everyone left Steamboat more tired than when they arrived but full of the energy that only comes with knowing that you can always push yourself a little further than you thought. Strong bonds were made stronger through a common challenge and the idea that we are all better having spent this time together.

2019 Heroes New Hope Deer Hunt

Photo of Heroes of New Hope Deer Hunt

To end the 2019 season of events for Team BVA, three of our blinded veteran members took part in a partnership event with the Heroes New Hope Foundation in Sullivan, Indiana. This deer hunting clinic allowed members Darryl Goldsmith, Zachary Tidwell, and Nate Harrison to learn effective deer hunting techniques along with vision loss. We are proud that all three members were able to succeed at hunting a deer and enjoyed the camaraderie of learning from one another as blinded veterans. Thanks HEROES NEW HOPE.

2019 Major Rob Soltes Golf Tournament

Three Team BVA members participated in the 2019 Major Rob Soltes Golf Tournament, National BVA President, Dr. Thomas Zampieri, Brian Harris, and Adam Rowland. This annual fundraising event for Team BVA gave these blinded veterans the opportunity to memorialize Major Rob Soltes optometry efforts for the veterans and to promote the awareness of the Blinded Veterans Association. With continuous support from BVA’s volunteer Tom Clark it was another successful year of funding for Team BVA in order to further assist blinded veterans of BVA.

2019 Bat II Appalachian Trail March

With major support from the U.S. Army Mountain Ranger Association, members of the Blinded Veterans Association’s Team BVA hiked over 80 miles of the North Carolina Appalachian Trail. Team BVA participants consisted of the following: Daniel Wallace, Lonnie Bedwell, and Ken Horn. During this event the veterans hiked over 12 miles a day, camped overnight, and survived off rations of food similar to sustainment of an Army Ranger. Joe Amerling, BVA Honorary Member, along with BVA member Ken Horn established support and obtained sponsorship for this event. The participants accomplished the mission, motivated many veterans to keep striving through rehabilitation with vision loss, and brought awareness to the Blinded Veterans Association.

2019 Project Gemini

Project Gemini is an exchange program between Blinded Veterans Association (BVA) and Blind Veterans UK (BVUK) where twice a year, members from each organization travel to the host country for camaraderie, adaptive sports, tours, and exchange of information and resources.

In October 2019, four Team BVA members and their sighted guides had the opportunity to collaborate with BVUK veterans during the US exchange in Birmingham, AL. Participants for this event were Marlene Davis-Lilly, Raquel Welch, Adrian Mohammed, and Lonnie Bedwell. During this exchange program participants learned coping mechanisms from one another on dealing with vision loss, the resources for the visually impaired through the Department of Veterans Affairs, and engaged in adaptive sports at the Lakeshore Foundation. 

Additionally, the veterans had the opportunity to tour local attractions such as the following: Birmingham Civil Rights Museum, Southern Museum of Flight, Alabama Institute for Deaf and Blind, and Eyesight Foundation of Alabama/Callahan Eye Foundation at the University of Alabama, Birmingham (UAB). This event was fortunate to have many sponsors for meals and we were very appreciative for BVA’s Honorary Member, Joe Amerling, for obtaining a donation from the Southern Veterinarian Partners towards the Team BVA Program.


Major Charles R. Soltes Jr. OD Memorial Golf Event
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