Heartstrings Foundation was created in 2017 by two brothers, Rowan and Aaron Pickering. They grew up in a family with a long tradition of military service, community involvement, and late night family jam sessions. Rowan has worked in the entertainment industry for over 25 years and Aaron spent 17 years as both USAF Enlisted Aviator and a civilian contractor. These combined experiences and their shared passion for music inspired them to launch Heartstrings and begin changing lives.
Heartstrings has a very simple mission: We provide guitars to Veterans and actively serving military members and their families so that they may integrate music into their recovery. Music helps heal hearts and provides them a new focus in life.
Six strings on a guitar. Five strings represent each branch of the military (Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy). The Sixth String is the "HeartString" or the loved ones of those service members. Through the power of music we are bringing families back together.
Our goal is to get guitars into the hands of as many wounded warriors as we possibly can. We want to be able to provide the tool and inspiration that can lead to the beginning of their journey. So far, we have been able to provide thousands of guitars to those in need. We’ve worked with the VA music programs that are in need of instruments. We’ve also participated in the Salute to the Troops, put on by the Gary Sinise Foundation, where we were able to give over 100 wounded warriors each a guitar. With your contribution, we will be able to reach even more of these warriors and give them another weapon in their arsenal to help them fight through their recovery. We aren’t going to stop until every one of these heroes gets their own guitar, but we need your help to make it happen.
Through the success and overall growth of Heartstrings Foundation we are now able to help kids with chronic illnesses. We have donated hundreds of guitars to Children's Hospitals across the country such as Phoenix Children's Hospital, Vanderbilt Children's Hospital and Denver Children's Hospital. Most of these guitars are given to the kids and they are able to learn to play with the help of music therapy programs in the hospitals.
Owner / CEO
Music has been a part of the Pickering family for generations. Aaron and his dad would spend hours in front of the record player, picking apart each album. When he wasn’t playing or listening to music, he was dressing up in his Dad’s camo uniforms, pretending to be an Airman, just like his dad. Aaron began his military career back in 2001 as an Airborne Radar Technician on the E-3 AWACS. He spent the early years of his career in support of counter narcoterrorism operations in South America, and the Global War on Terror in Middle East. In 2008, Aaron began flying on the MC-12 Liberty as one of the initial cadre members selected to develop and employ the new intelligence aircraft. After leaving the Air Force in 2011, he continued serving as a military contractor, where he flew in support of Special Operations Forces around the world. During his travels, he always used music to remind him of home, family and friends. No matter how chaotic the world was around him, music was always there to calm everything down. When the opportunity came around to dedicate his life to the Heartstrings Foundation, he jumped on it. This really is a dream for him, where he’s able to stay in the fight and combine his passion for music with his deep gratitude for our veterans.
You will most likely see Chris on-site either managing the success of your event or as the Emcee.
Chris has been in the Special Events Industry longer than he wants to see in print. He joined the ET team last year and has proven that his experience and knowlegde has been a great asset to our team. You will most likely see Chris on-site either managing the sucess of your event or as the Emcee. He is also responsibe for the furture leaders of our company as he trains our Event & Lead Staff.