If you have ever taken a tour of the Bull Run Warrior Retreat in Haymarket, you may have noticed the wonderful collection of books in the basement library. Those books were collected prior to the grand opening in 2014 after a very successful book drive intended to provide brand-new, hardcover books for guests to read, and take home with them if they like.
Through the years, the collection has dwindled, which is why Nicholas Dominique volunteered to refill the bookshelves, as well as provide a great selection of books for the newly opened PenFed Foundation Home at Warrior Retreat. Nicholas is the son of former UMA President Dean Dominique.
“I felt that it was important to lead the book drive because, as the saying goes, ‘Leaders read and readers lead,’ ” Nicholas said. “Nowadays everything revolves around technology but I believe that books are, and always will be, a very important resource for learning, as well as taking one’s mind off of all the things that are going on around you. Being able to have a wide selection of books available is extremely beneficial.”
With help from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Military Association, Battlefield High School’s Air Force Junior Reserve Officer Training class, and the BHS National Honor Society club, Nicholas was able to collect more than 400 books valued at over $7,600 for the retreat.
“I feel great about how this book drive went because there will be plenty of books for years to come,” the rising high school senior remarked. “I could not have done it without the help of the Battlefield High School JROTC, the BHS National Honor Society, and the USPTO Military Association. It truly was a team effort for a great cause.”
Nicholas began volunteering with SOWW shortly after he and his family moved to Gainesville after living overseas in Germany for six years.
“I enjoy volunteering with SOWW because it is a local retreat for wounded, ill and injured service members, and it is for such an amazing cause. To be able to give back to those who have sacrificed so much is truly an honor,” Nicholas commented.
“I believe the mission of SOWW is very important because these are our heroes, they deserve to have a cost-free living space available to them to relax and unwind. They have done so much for us and this is the least we can do to thank them for what they have done.”