Country artist Tim Montana has teamed up with Gibson Brands/Gibson Foundation to create a one-of-a-kind guitar in memory of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle (portrayed in the film, “American Sniper”), which will be auctioned online as part of the third annual Chris Kyle Memorial Benefit being held Saturday, May 14 at River Ranch Stockyards in Ft. Worth, TX. It is expected to be the centerpiece of all the items up for auction, with 100% of all proceeds being donated to the Spirit Of A Hero Foundation. Tim Montana and The Shrednecks–Tim Montana (lead vocals, guitar), Bryce Paul (bass) and Brian Wolff (drums)—are currently on tour throughout North America, and will perform at the event.
For those not in attendance at the event, bids will be taken at http://www.charitybuzz.com/ChrisKyleGuitar starting Thursday, May 12 at 3:00PM ET. Bidding will close Monday, June 6 at 3:00PM ET.
The one-of-a-kind guitar features handcrafted artwork created and built on the Historic Reissue Les Paul Platform (a 1950’s Reissue Les Paul, which is Gibson Custom’s primary product). A hand-carved skull and cross-hairs is on the guitar’s maple top, and the top paint is masked and hand-painted in the same camouflage colors that were on Chris Kyle’s Navy SEAL uniform. The back features a hand-painted portrait of Chris Kyle and a Navy SEAL Trident similar to those pounded into Chris’s casket as his funeral service. A hand-engraved quote, “It’s our duty to serve those that serve us,” is engraved on the guitar’s bridge pickup, which was digitized from Chris’s handwriting. A 7.62mm bullet shell from one of his missions is embedded in the guitar’s headstock. The shell–only three of which are known to exist–was retrieved by a member of his team during an active firefight. The neck pick-up is engraved with “Chris Kyle 2016 Memorial Benefit.”
“I am beyond excited to partner with my friends at Gibson again to raise money for our nation’s heroes,” declares Tim Montana. “Working with such an iconic American brand and being able to honor one of our countries bravest is an absolute privilege. Chris Kyle is one of my idols and a true patriot, and we’re carrying on his tradition by serving those who have served us.”
As Chris Kyle’s father, Wayne Kyle, continues, “On behalf of the Kyle Family, we’re honored to have Gibson support us and our mission of supporting our Veterans and First Responders. Last year, Gibson was instrumental in providing the Chris Kyle Memorial Benefit with an amazing, one-of-a-kind, guitar to be auctioned off. This year they have, once again, gone above and beyond by creating an even more spectacular guitar for auction. Their support for our Veteran and First Responder community is truly a blessing to all.”
“It is a pleasure to collaborate with Tim Montana again to support the men and women who have so admirably served our country,” said Henry Juszkiewicz, Chairman and CEO of Gibson Brands. “It is a truly special one-of-a-kind guitar that pays tribute to Chris Kyle, while also supporting the amazing work of the Chris Kyle Memorial Benefit.”
At last year’s event, with the help of many people who purchased gear and apparel, made donations, sponsored the event and/or donated their time or products, the Chris Kyle Memorial Benefit was able to provide a check for more than $400,000 to Guardian for Heroes Foundation in helping U.S. Veterans and continuing the efforts Chris started. This included the auction of another one-of-a-kind Tim Montana/Chris Kyle guitar created by Gibson Guitars for the event.
After seeing the film “American Sniper,” Montana teamed up with Gibson Guitars to create the guitar inspired by Navy SEAL Chris Kyle that went up for auction on CharityBuzz.com with a starting bid of $3,000. It ultimately raised an impressive $117,000. 100% of the proceeds benefitted the Guardian for Heroes Foundation, which provides free, in-house fitness equipment, facilitation of donated health club memberships, individualized programs, personal training and life coaching to in-need veterans with disabilities and those suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress from combat deployment.