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Effective Disaster Response Made Possible by the Ready Reserve

Patrick O'Neill

Coming from Tinley Park, IL—South Chicago but the suburbs—and enlisted in the Marine Corps at 17. Served as a Reconnaissance team member of 2D Recon BN, A CO on two deployments to Afghanistan. He's a creative student at the University of Southern California studying English/ Creative Writing and Advertising. Currently an intern with the awesome Team Rubicon Comms Team. Chances of bumping into Pat at an LA Brewery are high.

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What is the Ready Reserve?

Team Rubicon’s Ready Reserve ensures that whenever disaster strikes, the experienced, driven Greyshirts who signed up to serve with the organization will be able to provide immediate assistance to those in need. It’s made up of the following corporate partners who commit at least $50,000 annually to getting our boots on the ground when the call goes out:

  • American Express
  • AT&T
  • Citi Foundation
  • Farmers Insurance
  • Goldman Gives
  • Home Depot Foundation
  • JA & Kathryn Albertson Family Foundation
  • Kendeda Fund
  • Marcus Foundation
  • MetLife
  • PwC Charitable Foundation, Inc.
  • Schultz Family Foundation
  • Southwest
  • Travelers
  • USAA
  • Walmart

These sponsors believe in our mission to serve any community in need after disaster strikes, and they understand the impact continued service can have on the life of a returning veteran like Jeunai Boche, who found a new purpose and community through heavy equipment training with Team Rubicon.

Greyshirts are currently serving residents of Baton Rouge affected by historic flooding.
Greyshirts are currently serving residents of Baton Rouge affected by historic flooding.

Adequate disaster response requires much more than just boots on the ground—it requires support assets as well. For example, each of the ten Regions of Team Rubicon mobilize command resources to communicate effectively with local state governments and emergency authorities throughout the entirety of these fluid situations. With Ready Reserve funding, Team Rubicon’s able to get into a disaster-hit area with the necessary tools, establish operational resources quickly, and deploy our forces.

TR's Mobile Command Center deploys to multiple disaster zones each year, courtesy of Tyson Foods.
TR’s Mobile Command Center deploys to multiple disaster zones each year, courtesy of Tyson Foods.

Through it all, Greyshirts are prepared and willing to jump into the ring when the bat signal goes up. A well-known question thrown around when the weather forecast gets a bit ugly: “Is your go-bag ready?” The Ready Reserve is like TR’s operational go-bag.

As one of the country’s foremost veteran-led disaster response organizations, we are extremely thankful and fortunate for loyal donors who have supported our growth, allowing us to provide help to those on their worst days.

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Team Rubicon currently has ongoing operations in Louisiana, California, and Greece. Operation Golden Oak in Santa Clarita, CA was recently completed where 19 residential structures were destroyed by a wildfire. In the field, motivated Greyshirts worked to clear debris from trees and residential properties burned by the wildfires and brought much needed relief to affected residents.

Over 60 members deployed to Operation Golden Oak in Santa Clarita, CA to provide wlidfire relief.
Over 60 members deployed to Operation Golden Oak in Santa Clarita, CA to provide wlidfire relief.

A large amount of resources have been requested for Operation Geaux Big due to the size and nature of the disaster, which was caused by devastating flooding that rushed through Greater Baton Rouge, LA. Across the globe in Greece, having the resources to sustain Operation Hermes, a mission expected to run through 2016, is a vital goal, one that can be reached through continued donor support. Medically trained members, including doctors within the TR ranks, have been called upon to provide primary medical care for refugees fleeing war in the Middle East.

Operation Geaux Big work load in Louisiana.
Operation Geaux Big work load in Louisiana.

The busiest month of 2016 was August, reaching eight active operations simultaneously, from flooding to wildfires, and having that confidence to take on multiple operations is possible because of the Ready Reserve support.

Thanks to those corporate partners for having our back.


How can you support the mission? Sign up to volunteer with the team or make a donation to support those in the field.