Giving Homeowners a Fighting Chance

Scott Williams

Scott Williams reflects on serving on Operation Thunder Valley and connecting with other service-driven individuals.

About four years ago I was watching TV and saw a quick news story on a volunteer organization. I had recently sold my business and was looking for something meaningful to do. I wanted something that didn’t just occupy my time but that would really make a difference.

This volunteer organization that I saw on the news was Team Rubicon, made up of military veterans, with a tag line that read “Veterans are our passion-disasters are our business.” Although I never served, I thought this might be a way to help in disasters and reach out to our returning servicemen.

Little did I know how good the people were and how meaningful the work was. Team Rubicon has allowed me to not only interact with veterans of all branches but to actually make a difference in people’s lives.

As a civilian, I feel I’m able to connect with those who have served in the military with those of us who did not serve. Working and sweating side-by-side with one goal in mind to help those in need whether it was hauling, mucking or lugging with a sense of purpose and accomplishment

All of this tenacity was evident at Operation Thunder Valley where the TRibe broke new ground by mitigating “before” a disaster, rather than after a disaster. Partnering with West Metro Fire, we removed brush and dead trees between the houses and Green Mountain to establish a twenty-foot safe zone to stop the spread of wildfire from the mountain area to the homes. This would give the homeowners a fighting chance since there have been eight wildfires in that neighborhood in the last six months.

Each operation is different yet the same. You see some of the same individuals and you get to meet new ones, each there for the same purpose but each with a unique story yet all of us have the same compassion for helping each other or the local community we are in.

Through Team Rubicon, I feel that we truly make a difference in the lives of the people we help. Just look at the smiles in the group photos of the TRibe taken after an operation. I recommend everyone come join the tribe and see how you too can make a difference.

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