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The Chicago Wolves will honor current and former servicemen, servicewomen and their families on Military Appreciation Night, presented by Sears Home Services, on Saturday, April 8.

The Wolves and Sears Home Services are earnest in their support of those who are committed to the safety and security of our country.

“Typically, members of our military let their shared dedication to America’s well-being speak for itself,” said Wolves president Mike Gordon. “We’re eager to offer some recognition while allowing our military the opportunity to enjoy some time with their families.”

For Sears Home Services, it’s yet another tangible to show how much the company believes in those who have served.

“Since World War I, companies with Sears Holdings have been proud supporters of America’s military and those who have served,” said Sears Veterans Program manager Scott M. Stratton. “Fast-forward nearly 100 years and our commitment to our veteran associates and their families is as strong as ever. In 2016, Sears Holdings hired more than 5,200 veterans and military spouses – many of whom are currently serving in the National Guard and Reserve forces.”

Stratton personifies Sears’ willingness to hire veterans. The Villa Park, Illinois, native joined the Army shortly after graduating from Willowbrook High School in 1992.

Upon completing his active duty, which included a year in Korea with the 2nd Infantry Division, Stratton enrolled at DeVry University in Addison. After being out of school for several years – and having a wife and a child – Stratton discovered he was having a tougher time than anticipated making the transition back to the classroom. He also didn’t quite connect quite as readily with his classmates, who were years younger and didn’t have the same life experiences or responsibilities outside the classroom.

He also discovered something else as he earned his Keller Graduate degree in Management: “Veterans graduated at a better rate than their non-traditional student counterparts,” Stratton said. “They could then translate to being a better employee.”

During a 10-year stretch working for DeVry primarily in admissions, some of Stratton’s work involved the Sears Veterans Program. In 2015, when the man who held the Sears Veterans Program manager post decided to leave the company, Stratton was asked to replace him.

Now part of Stratton’s work involves Military Appreciation Night, which has led to an appreciation for the Wolves.

“If we can align ourselves with an organization that’s community-based and has the right tone and feel, this is an easy step for us,” Stratton said.