American Legion and NFL Legends Unite in National Campaign to Fight Sleep Apnea

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Sleep Group Solutions, David Gergen, Dr. Steve Marinkovich and Former NFL legends from across the nation are teaming up with the American Legion Post 94, to combat sleep apnea. The American Legion is joining the “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign in efforts to help spread awareness.

Derek Kennard, David Gergen and Lincoln Kennedy Team Up to Fight Sleep Apnea: Photo Provided by David Gergen

We are coming out to show support in sleep apnea. It is a growing concern across the country and especially for the retired veterans because they tend to be at higher at risk...

The next stop for the Tackle Sleep Apnea campaign will be on Sept 26, at LeMay, America’s Car Museum in Tacoma, Washington. The event will begin at 7 p.m. and is free to the public. The museum is located at 2702 E. “D” St. Players will be available after the event, for autographs and photograph opportunities. In addition, interviews with the press are currently being scheduled.

“We are coming out to show support in sleep apnea. It is a growing concern across the country and especially for the retired veterans because they tend to be at higher at risk,” Seth Bowles, Fourth District Commander of The American Legion in Washington said. “These events are changing lives for the better and we are very pleased to be a part of this awaking.”

As part of the event, a discussion will be taking place with sleep experts. NFL legends will also be discussing their experience with sleep apnea. The legends that will be part of the upcoming event include: Warren Moon, Derek Kennard and Nesby Glasgow. Lincoln Kennedy will also be joining the fight on sleep apnea, but will not be in attendance, due to schedule conflicts. “I am excited to be a part of helping retired players combat sleep apnea,” Kennedy said.

Derek Kennard will be sharing his personal experience with sleep apnea and fatality. “My brother died because of his sleep apnea problem,” Kennard said. “I am also a sleep apnea sufferer. I am spreading the word in memory of my brother and want to let people know how getting treatment, has improved my life."

In addition to the event, free in-home sleep tests provided by Sleep Group Solutions, will be offered to those attendees who qualify. Dr. Kim Nevus, MD, will be at the event to diagnose those who have sleep apnea.Dr. Steve Marinkovich, DDS, ABDSM, will be speaking on how dentists now play a role in the treatment process for sleep apnea.

Dentists are now able to treat sleep apnea sufferers through creating a custom made mouth piece that works by repositioning the jaw and pushing the tongue forward or by restraining the tongue to keep the airway open. “I know how dangerous and deadly sleep apnea can be," Moon said. "I want to spread the word that there is another option besides the CPAP machine."

The “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign is sponsored by The Pro-Players Health Alliance (PPHA), an organization dedicated to helping former NFL players, through providing testing and treatment options for those who suffer from sleep apnea. In addition, the PPHA is dedicated to integrating education and raising sleep apnea awareness, in a fun and memorable way.

In addition to the campaign, the PPHA is dedicated to testing and getting people treated who suffer from sleep apnea. The PPHA will be at Temple University in Philadelphia on Oct. 12 with The Living Heart Foundation in efforts to spread awareness. “The PPHA is dedicated to reaching anyone and everyone who feels that they might be at risk for having sleep apnea,” President of PPHA, David Gergen, said. “We are teaming up with as many organizations as possible in efforts to save as many lives as we can.”

To find out more information or to register for the event visit or call 253-474-3223. For more information about the campaign and PPHA visit Visit to take an online questionnaire and find out if you are at risk for having sleep apnea.

Previous events have taken place in Dallas, Minneapolis and Seattle. The “Tackle Sleep Apnea” campaign has recently been featured on FOX Minneapolis and Seattle, ESPN Radio Seattle, Sports Radio KJR and on CBS and FOX Online.

Sleep Group Solutions (SGS) will be providing all of the free in-home sleep tests for the event.

ABOUT SLEEP GROUP SOLUTIONS: Sleep Group Solutions offers a complete sleep solutions program including; dental sleep medicine continuing education, screening technology, home sleep testing, oral appliances, insurance billing, marketing, in office training and more.

ABOUT DAVID GERGEN: David Gergen has been a nationally respected dental lab technician for over 25 years. He received the award for "The Finest Orthodontic Technician in the Country" given by Columbus Dental in 1986. He also received a lifetime achievement award by the Gelb Academy as America’s greatest Orthodontic technician of all time, in 2012. He has worked for some of the pioneers in the orthodontic and sleep dentistry fields. Gergen and his father John Gergen began Gergen Orthodontic Lab in 1984 and has grown it into one of the most respected labs in the country. One of his proudest achievements is receiving The National Leadership award for Arizona Small Businessman of the Year in 2004. David’s latest duties are the Dental Director of the American Sleep and Breathing Academy and he taken a spot at Tufts University doing seminars for the graduate program on Dental sleep medicine. Mr. Gergen is also the Dental Sports Medicine Director of the Sleep Academy.

ABOUT GERGEN’S ORTHODONTIC LAB: Gergen’s Orthodontic Lab specialize in fabricating orthodontic appliances such as TMJ Splints, Sleep Apnea Appliances, and Retainers, as well as all types of functional appliances such as the Respire, Herbst Sleep , Bionators, and Twin Blocks. The Gergen’s staff provides complete service in every phase of design and fabrication of our appliances for the orthodontist and general dentist.

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Monica Jimenez Susoreny
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