Meet 3 Vets That Take One Day Jobs
My wife and I recently went to a couple of locations where local US veterans were working at some one day jobs taken from HirePatriots.com. The great thing about these opportunities is getting to meet and listen to the personal stories of the US vets that are being assisted by our outreach. It is very encouraging and inspiring. This time we got to meet 3 veterans that were already out of the military.
One was an officer in the Special Forces. He is a part time professor with a doctorate. He has a good pension and does not take these jobs for the money. One reason is because he likes getting to meet more of his neighbors in the area. He has 12 homes that he works at regularly, and the people in those homes feel like he is one of their family. Of course, having friends like that will make anyone a bit happier, and bring some light and joy into every day. But there is a more important reason. The former military officer also does it because it is difficult for anyone in charge of leading veterans into combat to have any of them lose their lives in that effort. And he has a list of men he led and loved that did not survive. Those memories follow him through every day and night. He cannot control them. It has nothing to do with will power. He copes. He does want every soldier is taught to do: He adapts and survives. And meeting friendly, patriotic people in his community; and being out in the daylight doing manual labor, and also meeting other veterans, is the value he receives. In fact, he always looks for the lowest paying jobs because he feels like those are where he can do the most good. Working hard and helping others is a tremendous reward in itself. There are many things that are much more important than money.
The next US veteran I met was younger. I am guessing 29. He was a burly man with large muscles. And he had a beard, which has not been traditionally identified as something representing a man in the military. This is, until we began sending our soldiers into areas where every man has a beard. He was also a member of our Special Forces. He wore the native garb and blended unnoticed into the heart of the enemy’s own region, community and neighborhood until he and his elite forces could enter an encampment one night and do their sworn duty. This man did not talk much. Besides, he was also working really hard. I do not know any more of his story, except that he takes jobs regularly off of HirePatriots.com. My wife remembers him also saying, “Ma’am, these jobs have been very important to me. I am very glad that I get to meet you and thank you personally.”
The next job we went to was a home for severely mentally challenged senior citizens. A US veteran, very fit and working furiously, was loading huge Palm fronds unto the back of his pick-up truck. He had just cut them after climbing forty foot, narrow, swaying trees with a hand saw. This was in a residential cul de sac and several of the neighboring homeowners were watching this man work from the foot of the driveway. They were eliciting oohs and ahhs. And several simultaneously blurted out things like, “This man is amazing!” And, “ I’ve never seen anyone work this hard!”
Now, my wife and I had called a day before to make sure that it was OK for us to drop by. He had told my wife “Yes. I would especially like to meet your husband.” But this vet was so intently focused on his duties that we thought it would be best to not interrupt him, and we began to walk away. But the owner of the house immediately insisted that we wait and let this vet know that we had arrived. He ran inside the house and quickly came back out with a huge bouquet of flowers for us. It made my wife cry. But I think it was just a piece of dirt that flew into my eyes.
* Author’s note: I, my wife and other HirePatriots leaders across the USA at times receive greatly heartfelt gratitude for promoting and providing one day jobs. It is very difficult to accept. We never feel extraordinary, in fact just the opposite. There have never been enough one day jobs on HirePatriots.com. We all get emails and phone calls from veterans and their spouses bemoaning that whenever they try to take a job someone else has already taken it. We all feel an ache that much more needs to be done.
Later that evening, we met this Gulf War soldier who still suffers tremendously from the seeing horrific things that defy description because of our country’s vastly superior and overwhelmingly destructive fire power, at a restaurant. He brought his wife and son too. How it broke my heart!
This man was a cook. He never thought that he would have to see combat. But before heading into Iraq from Kuwait, the US tanks rained down horrific destruction upon the Iraqi forces and armored vehicles in their way. As his regiment drove through the aftermath of this horrific destruction, his young, innocent mind saw things that scarred his memory. He stills sees those images every day and night. Thoughts of suicide sometimes still wrap their tugging ropes around him. — This is what our young men and women endure for our sakes. This is what they suffer in our place and much more. – To me, like Christ, they have been wounded and crushed for our sakes.
He whispered something to his son. A few minutes later, his son returned with a triangular trophy case familiar to all US veterans. From it he pulled a folded US flag. Then he told me its significance to him. In respect, I will not reveal it to you. It was far too much. I was shocked and insisted that I must refuse until my rejection of his gift threatened to offend him. Then I had to accept with deep respect, honor and gratitude.
People frequently ask HirePatriots leaders why they volunteer so much of their time and resources to what we do. This is why. We are making a significant difference in US veterans’ live every single day. – We are blessed to serve those who have already served us without any thought to the toll it would take upon their own lives and souls.
Call to Action! — Residents and businesses please post your jobs on HirePatriots.com and encourage friends to do so too.
And if you can, please make a $25 donation to help us keep going. http://bit.ly/pG6nMb
People Magazine’s Heroes Among Us
Past Chairman: CA Economic Council
Past Secretary: United Veteran Council
From President Bush: The Congressional Medal of Merit
From President Obama: President’s Volunteer Service Medal
From San Diego: The Visionary Award for Creating Economic Development
From the Chamber of Commerce: The Extra Mile Award
From ABC TV: The Leadership Award
From U.S. Veterans & Families: Liberty
From Jesus Christ: Purpose & Eternal Life