In 2007, OHT Founder Dot Sheehan was listening to a Boston radio station, where a trivia contest was underway. The question was: “What’s the one thing most wanted by head-wounded soldiers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan?”
The answer? Baseball caps to cover wounds, burns, swelling and bandages. From this simple question Operation Hat Trick, an organization dedicated to helping veterans suffering from the visible and invisible wounds of war, was born. Dot was so affected by this — something so simple — that she knew she had to do something.
Nate and Mike
OHT sprang to life in 2008, when tragedy hit Dot’s University of New Hampshire community. Nate Hardy and Mike Koch, two Navy SEALs trained together, fought together and died together on Feb 4, 2008. Nate is son of UNH professor Dr. Steve Hardy and his wife Donna. Nate and Mike are buried side-by-side in Arlington National Cemetery.
A small-town hockey beginning…
Inspired by UNH’s rich tradition in hockey, Dot launched Operation Hat Trick, initially donating hats to Veterans Administration Medical Centers and selling them very locally.
But things changed dramatically in 2012 when Operation Hat Trick was ready to launch onto the national scene, and the rest is history.
… turns into a national movement
Operation Hat Trick’s brand and mission are now embraced by more than 500 colleges and universities in all 50 states, 130 high schools, 20 National Hockey League teams, 85 Minor League baseball teams, 13 NBA teams, and over 100 companies like Sig Sauer, Red River Technology, Texas Roadhouse, Advocare, Spartan Race, the Lids Foundation and others help spread the word about our veterans and our obligation to them. The list of new OHT licensees and supporters continues to grow.
Every day, Operation Hat Trick reaches out to more fans, donors and partners to help improve the lives of veterans recovering from unthinkable injuries.
Operation Hat Trick generates awareness, support and funding for the recovery of America’s wounded service members and veterans. OHT pursues these goals through the sale of OHT branded merchandise, proceeds of which are distributed to selected organizations supporting the OHT mission.