A Marine Captain (woman) came to one of our HirePatriots job fairs. She had been blown up in Iraq on patrol. Her injuries were so serious that she was kept in a coma for almost a year. – When she awoke, she was delighted to find out that she was a mother of a daughter. (She had not known that she was pregnant when she ran over an IED.) But she was crushed to hear that she was also a widow: Her husband, a Marine Captain too, had been killed in Afghanistan while she was in coma. (He knew about his wife and daughter before his death.) – She also woke up a paraplegic.
I saw her in the electric wheelchair entering our job fair on Camp Pendleton. She looked very distressed and worried. The baby was asleep on her chest when she passed by. – The next day, in the North County Times, on the front page, was her picture leaving our job fair: She had the brightest smile I have ever seen. – In her hand were 5 job offers! –She could work and support her family. This is all our vets are asking for.
“Don’t just thank a vet. Hire a Vet!” is our current national campaign.
In my 40 years of seeking to assist US veterans, particularly combat veterans, this is what I know: It is critical that they be employed upon transitioning out of the military. They have endured a lot on behalf of our country. Many of the painful experiences they encountered will never leave their memories. – But those traumatic experiences lose their ability to disable a veteran if they are employed and able to sustain themselves and their families.
Unfortunately, ignorant stereotypes about combat veterans continue to be promoted on TV and in the movies. They too often represent these exemplary US citizens as dangerous or deranged. This is completely erroneous. Just the opposite is much closer to the truth.
Combat certainly has its horrors and sorrows that will always be a part of a vets memory. But for the vast majority those experiences actually make them stronger and better citizens. They have a characters that been hardened like steel when it goes through a furnace and then is cooled in water. They are able to persevere and to accomplish tasks regardless of the obstacles they confront.
Today’s Veterans were not drafted, they have served our country willingly. They are the best that America has to offer any employer.
Please post your jobs for free on HirePatriots.com.
Please send this out to any group or network to which you belong and help us to spread the word! Thank you.
Don’t just thank a vet: Hire a Vet!