APPLETON — The Green Bay Packers and WPS Heath Solutions paid special tribute to Appleton native and U.S. Army veteran Adam Gossens during Sunday night’s game against the Chicago Bears for ‘Operation Fan Mail.’
The Operation Fan Mail program recognizes military families and veterans at each Packers home game and is marking its 16th season in 2022.
Gossens is originally from Appleton, Wis., and served 20 years in the U.S. Army, according to a Packers’ news release.
He served as an airborne military police officer and achieved the rank of Sergeant First Class. He was stationed at Fort Carson, Colo., Fort Bragg, N.C., Sembach Air Base, Kaiserslautern, Germany, and Fort Lewis, Wash. He deployed to active war zones six times in his career, fighting in Bosnia, Kosovo, twice in Iraq and twice in Afghanistan. He is a triple bronze star recipient.
After first enlisting in the military in 1995 and serving for six years, he retired from the military in August of 2001 to return to life as a civilian. Shortly after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, he returned to active duty and continued serving until 2016.
He has two children: a daughter, Quinn, and a son, Joseph. His wife, Maria, is also an Army veteran; she retired as a master sergeant. The couple said they both had incredibly rewarding careers in the military and were proud to serve their country. Gossens and his family recently moved back to Appleton, where they help care for his ill father.
Operation Fan Mail, which debuted in 2007, is designed to honor families with a member who is on active duty, or a member who is a veteran. The family member can be a spouse, mother, father, son, daughter or sibling. The Packers and WPS Health Solutions will host a family or group at each 2022 home game and recognize them on the video board during pregame activities. A total of 148 individuals, families or groups have been recognized through the program thus far.
To choose families, the Packers and WPS Health Solutions are asking interested families, or friends of eligible families, to submit an essay, 500 words or less, on why a particular fan should be saluted this season. Essays can be sent to Operation Fan Mail, P.O. Box 10628, Green Bay, WI, 54307-0628 or online at packers.com/lambeau-field/operation-fan-mail.
In addition to being recognized on-field prior to the game, selected families will receive four tickets to the game and a $150 Packers Pro Shop gift card courtesy of WPS Health Solutions.