Lakewood Ranch Tribute to Heroes Concert at Greenbrook Adventure Park raises money for local veterans organizations.
When the band members of Bradenton-based Whiskey Blind invited Herman Martinez on stage to play drums with them for a few songs at the 2021 Tribute to Heroes Concert, the U.S. Army and Vietnam War veteran hadn't performed in about two years.
He quickly felt at home.
"It's kind of like riding a bike," Martinez said. "You might lose the speed, but you still know how to get on and ride."
Martinez, founder of the Del Webb Association of Veterans and Military Supporters, was one of many veterans to attend. The concert was held by Lakewood Ranch at Greenbrook Adventure Park. Proceeds from parking and beer sales were donated to local veterans' groups.
Though Martinez enjoyed the concert, he said Memorial Day is difficult for many veterans, especially those like himself who served in wars with compatriots who died overseas.
"We love to put a smile on people's faces, because you never know what they're going through," Martinez said. "That means a lot to every musician."
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