After leaving the Army I felt lost and unable to fit in within the civilian world. What was important to others out there wasn’t important to me, and I felt wasted after a life dedicated to trying to somehow make the world a better place. I found that the only place I could talk about this and feel understood was with other veterans, but just talking about it wasn’t enough, I wanted to feel useful and like I was making a difference again.
Team Rubicon has given me that opportunity and so much more. From the beginning Team Rubicon put me in touch with a network of other veterans who understood what I was experiencing and also had that desire to continue growing and bettering themselves and the world around them. I grew inspired and gained motivation knowing that in the event of a disaster or emergency I could be called on to respond.
This opportunity came recently as a mission to South Sudan came up in response to an emergency refugee situation. This was one of the best opportunities I have had in my life to put my wide range of military skills to use and be as useful as my ingenuity could make me. A day could see me digging wells, provisioning local resources, fixing a generator or a vehicle and helping to operate a vaccination clinic.
I could really see how Team Rubicon is a new paradigm in disaster relief as a team on the ground with a wide range of skills and a can-do military attitude can accomplish amazing things far out of proportion to their numbers. Those skills we have learned over the years in the military such as flexibility, communication, resourcefulness, teamwork and the never-say-die reaction to problems enabled us to make great strides to helping relieve the suffering of tens of thousands of refugees.
As the saying goes, “A soldier in the right place at the right time can change the world.” I have come to accept that I will always in some way be a soldier, and so I’d like to thank Team Rubicon for giving me the opportunity to feel like I am still able to change the world for the better.