Military family, couple, with NFL player smiling in front of Sleep Number delivery truck after receiving free bed.

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3 Military Families Get a Pleasant Surprise

· Article

3 Military Families Get a Pleasant Surprise


When he returns home to the Dallas area from deployment to Afghanistan this December, Jerrod Kennemur, a U.S. Army National Guard, will trade a standard-issue military twin mattress for a customizable Sleep Number 360® smart bed.

His new bed, along with Sleep Number beds for his two children, were part of a special thank you to military families from Sleep Number and Blue Star Families, a non-profit that builds communities that support military families by connecting research and data to programs and solutions. Sleep Number has worked with Blue Star Families to help improve the lives of military families through better sleep for six years now.

America’s military families make enormous sacrifices in the service of our country — moving from base to base, spending holidays without their deployed loved ones, managing long-term physical and mental health issues.

“Struggling for a good night’s sleep shouldn’t be another burden they face,” says Kevin Brown, chief marketing officer for Sleep Number.

“At Sleep Number, we know the impact quality sleep has on us all. It’s the center of our health and wellness, and it allows us all to be at our best each day,” says Brown.

As the Official Sleep + Wellness Partner of the National Football League, Sleep Number teamed up with local NFL stars to deliver the beds via a surprise knock on the door. The NFL stars’ participation was part of November’s NFL Salute to Service and Military Family Appreciation Month.

Along with new beds for the active-duty members, their children also received new beds as part of Sleep Number’s Social Impact commitment to improve lives of one million youth through better sleep by 2025.

According to Blue Star Families’ 2018 Military Family Lifestyle Survey, 57 percent of military families said their child had experienced separation anxiety, worry, and/or sleeping problems as a result of the service member’s deployment.

“We want service members and their families to know they’re appreciated and that their sacrifices don’t go unnoticed,” said Kathy Roth-Douquet, CEO of Blue Star Families. “We also want them to know about the resources available to aid the entire family in getting quality sleep.”

The families were chosen from among thousands of active-duty nominees. Their stories echo the sacrifices so many in our military make each day.

Kennemur Family

When Jerrod Kennemur isn’t deployed with his Army National Guard unit, he works as a full-time police officer. Kennemur lives in Grand Prairie, Texas, with his wife, Heather, and two kids. Currently, he is in Afghanistan but is scheduled to be home for a little R&R over Christmas break.

Amari Cooper, a tight end for the Dallas Cowboys, surprised the family to let them know they were getting free Sleep Number 360 smart beds.

Grill Family

Mark Grill has been deployed three times during 14 years in the U.S. Marine Corps, including two combat deployments to Iraq as a bomb dog handler.

Grill and his wife Chelsey have two young sons. The couple met in Monterey, California, where Mark was studying to be an Arabic linguist. Prior to living in the St. Paul, Minnesota, area, the family lived in South Carolina where Grill served as a Marine drill instructor for three years.

Grill is currently studying at the University of Minnesota. Once he graduates in May, he will become a Marine Corps officer and plans to remain in the corps another ten years. His father, Terrill Grill, is a U.S. Army veteran.

Pat Elflein, an offensive tackle for the Minnesota Vikings, presented the family with their mattresses.

Jessica Bull

Bull has served in the U.S. Army for almost 10 years. She and her husband, who met in college, have two young daughters. She is currently stationed at Fort Leavenworth. A career soldier, she also plans at least another ten years of service.

Travis Kelce, a tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs, presented the family with their surprise package.

Sleep Number is the Official Sleep + Wellness Partner of the NFL. Whether you’re an elite athlete or an everyday all-star, sleep is a vital component to help you recover and perform, physically and mentally. The Sleep Number 360® smart bed with SleepIQ® technology inside senses your movements and automatically adjusts to keep you sleeping comfortably. Find your Sleep Number® setting for your best possible night’s sleep.

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