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Vol. 8 Number 11 • November 2020

Homeland M A G A Z I NE

How To Honor Veterans For Their Service Year-Round

CALL-TO-SERVICE

“Geronimo!”

MST

SPOTLIGHT: VETERAN OrganizationS

MENTAL HEALTH

WHAT’S NEXT

National Family Caregivers Month

tRANSITION To Civilian Life

Resources for Veterans

Codes of Conduct

and Workplace Ethics

LEGAL EAGLE T:8.97"

Take advantage of a Medicare plan designed with veterans in mind 1-855-322-1158, TTY 711 | UHCPatriotPlan.com SRPJ59083_FrontCover-Strip_FINAL.indd 1

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PTSD COACH PTSD (posttraumatic stress disorder) is a mental health problem that some people develop after experiencing or witnessing a life-threatening event, like combat, a natural disaster, a car accident, or sexual assault. More than half of individuals experience at least one trauma in their lives. The National Center for PTSD offers FREE, confidential mobile apps that provide help, education, and support related to mental health.

Download PTSD Coach to:

Learn about PTSD and available treatments Track your PTSD symptoms over time Practice relaxation, mindfulness, and other stress-management exercises Grow your support network Access crisis resources

bit.ly/PTSDTreatmentWorksHomeland

PTSD Coach is not meant to replace professional care.

Search “PTSD Coach�

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Resources Support Transition HEALTH INSPIRATION

Homeland Magazine www.HomelandMagazine.com

Voted 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020 BEST resource, support media for veterans, military families & military personnel.

WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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EDITOR’S

LETTER

Publisher Editor-In-Chief Mike Miller mikemiller@HomelandMagazine.com

Contributing Writers Holly Shaffner Veteran Advocate

RanDee McLain, LCSW A Different Lens

Vicki Garcia

Enlisted to Entrepreneur

CJ Machado

Homeland Photojournalist

Kelly Bagla, Esq. Legal Eagle

Joe Molina Veterans Chamber of Commerce

Eve Nasby

What’s Next - Transition

Eva Stimson

Veteran Advocate

Collaborative Organizations

www.HomelandMagazine.com Greetings and a warm welcome to Homeland Magazine! Please take some time to get to know the layout of our magazine. The Magazine focuses on national resources, support, community, and inspiration for our veterans and the military families that keep it together. Our magazine is driven by passion, vision, reflection and the future. The content is the driving force behind our magazine and the connection it makes with our veterans, service members, military families, and civilians. The magazine is supported by a distinguishing list of national veteran organizations, resource centers, coalitions, veteran advocates, and more. We are honored to share the work of so many committed and thoughtful people. Homeland Magazine is a veterans magazine for veterans by veterans. We appreciate your support and are so happy to have you as a reader of Homeland Magazine.

Mike Miller

Publisher/Editor mikemiller@HomelandMagazine.com 4

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Wounded Warrior Project Raquel Rivas Disabled American Veterans American’s Warrior Partnership Shelter To Soldier Father Joe’s Village Flying Leathernecks Give An Hour Courage To Call Operation Homefront With National Veteran Advocates & Guest Writers Homeland Magazine is published monthly. Submissions of photographs, Illustrations, drawings, and manuscripts are considered unsolicited materials and the publisher assumes no responsibility for the said items. All rights reserved.

Homeland Magazine

9528 Miramar Road, Suite 41 San Diego, CA 92126

(858) 275-4281 Contact Homeland Magazine at:

info@homelandmagazine.com


NOVEMBER

INSIDE THIS ISSUE 8 CALL-TO-SERVICE 12 Service & Legacy 14 Spotlight: WWP 16 Operation Gratitude 21 Strength in Numbers 22 Spotlight: DAV 24 How To Honor Veterans Year-Round 28 Real Talk: Thank You Caregivers 30 Military Sexual Trauma 32 Caregiving TBI 34 LENS: Veterans Day 40 What’s Next: BioTech Landing Zone 42 Conduct and Workplace Ethics 46 ENLISTED TO ENTREPRENEUR 50 LinkedIn Tips: Business Development 53 Veteran Transitions to Singer/Songwriter 54 Legal Eagle: Contracts Post COVID-19 56 Legally Speaking: Disability & Divorce 58 Veteran Networking 60 Celebrating Impact: PTSD

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Host this National Memorial in your Community

Please contact us to add a Fallen loved one, host the memorial, or make a donation at: info@RememberingOurFallen.org

www.RememberingOurFallen.org www.PatrioticProductions.org

Tribute Towers

Remembering Our Fallen is a national memorial unlike any other -with military & personal photos of 5,000 military Fallen since 9/11/2001 Unveiled at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. in 2017, it has since traveled the nation coastto-coast. This memorial also includes those who returned from war, but lost their inner battle to suicide, and those who died from non-war zone injuries while serving in their military capacity. Please contact us to add a Fallen loved one, host the memorial, or make a donation at: info@RememberingOurFallen.org Artist - Elizabeth Moug Artist - Saul Hansen 6

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“If the purpose of a war memorial is to help us remember the sacrifices of the Heroes, and to help us heal from our sorrow, then your mission has been accomplished. Thank you for this tremendous gift.” - 1LT Daniel P. Riordan’s Mother

“There is a ‘disconnect’ between those we ask to serve our military objectives and our society at large. This memorial made that connection very dramatically and helped us understand the magnitude of their sacrifices. - Ed Malloy, Mayor of Fairfield, Iowa


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CALL-TO-SERVICE By, CJ Machado

“Geronimo!” exclaimed WWII paratrooper

Vincent J. Speranza as he jumped out of the aircraft with the U.S. Army Golden Knights Tandem Parachute Team. After many months of preparation, Speranza’s monumental jump took place on September 29, 2020 during the Golden Knights Tandem Camp at Skydive Perris in Perris, CA.

He served as a Machine Gunner in the historic “Battle of the Bulge,” earning him the nickname “Curse and Traverse” Speranza. Although Speranza has shared many incredible stories, he’s best known for his “Airborne Beer” story when he served a wounded comrade beer from his helmet that was taken from a nearby bombed tavern. Speranza’s Airborne Beer story can be seen in the documentary LIBERTAS (Normandy Jump 2019) or read in his book “NUTS!”

The Golden Knights are one of only three Department of Defense-sanctioned aerial demonstration teams, along with the U.S. Navy Blue Angels and the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. The U.S. Army Golden Knights tandem camp is a community outreach program that gives public influencers and educators an experience of a lifetime, while informing the public of the opportunities available within the U.S. Army. At 95 years of age, the “Battle of the Bulge” 101st Airborne Division paratrooper Vincent J. Speranza was called to service once more. This time, not to “Save the world,” but to inspire the masses. It was CW5 (Chief) Troy DeGolyer, Command Chief Warrant Officer (CCWO) from the U.S. Army Recruiting Command that initiated the tandem jump with the WWII “Screaming Eagle” and the U.S. Army Golden Knights. In February, 2020, Speranza and DeGolyer met at a formal event in Fort Benning, Georgia, hosted by the United States Army Marksmanship Unit. Speranza was the keynote speaker and DeGolyer was one of the distinguished guests. After listening to Speranza’s engaging speech and wartime stories, DeGolyer was moved to pay tribute to Speranza. He nominated Speranza for the thrill of a lifetime, to jump once more with the most elite parachutists of the world, the U.S. Army Golden Knights tandem team. From the start, the Golden Knights were supportive and enthusiastic about jumping a WWII “Screaming Eagle” Paratrooper. Speranza was with the 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division.

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Being that Speranza was 95 years of age, the Golden Knights took every precaution necessary to ensure a safe jump and landing. With over 6,000 jumps and 2,000 tandem jumps, the lead tandem instructor for the U.S. Golden Knights, Sergeant First Class (SFC) Sloan was chosen to jump Vincent. “It was an important opportunity to honor and remember a member of the “Greatest Generation,” expressed SFC Sloan.


On the day of the jump, it was all smiles for Vincent from the exit to the landing. In fact, he complemented SFC Sloan for an incredibly soft landing, giving credit to SFC Sloan’s “soft bottom.” Whereas SFC Sloan humbly admitted, “It was an emotional experience to have the privilege of jumping with a WWII “Screaming Eagle” and hear him yell Geronimo! …the very same word he yelled while exiting the aircraft during WWII.”

“Geronimo!”

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On the day of Speranza’s jump, Skydive Perris, Honor Flight San Diego and the WWII Airborne Demonstration Team hosted honorary display tables for Speranza and one of the original members of the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, Gerald “Jerry” Bourquin. Bourquin shared eclectic memorabilia with today’s members of the Golden Knights, including his impressive parachuting champion “Golden Knight” bronze statue that stands about 2 feet tall. Bourquin (D-22) is the second recipient of the USPA Gold Wings. A Korean and Vietnam war veteran with two tours (1966 and 1971) in Vietnam as a “slick” and later, gunship helicopter “driver” with over 3,000 hours of combat time. Bourquin is also a recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross for his early parachute contributions and has over 4,000 jumps to his credit. Among his many accomplishments, Bourquin was inducted into The International Skydiving Museum and Hall of Fame. The Legacy of the Golden Knights take pride in that they were Army soldiers first. In 1959, Bourquin was part of the nineteen Airborne Soldiers from various military units that formed the Strategic Army Command (STRAC) Parachute Team.

Two years later, the Department of Defense announced that the STRAC team would become the United States Army Parachute Team. By 1962, the team earned the nickname the “Golden Knights”. “Golden” signified the gold medals the team had won while “Knights” alluded to the team’s ambition to conquer the skies. “The most significant part of the recent tandem camp at Skydive Perris was being able to memorialize fallen soldier, Private 2nd Class, 82nd Airborne Division, Caleb Smither,” stated veteran advocate, CJ Machado. Both Machado and Speranza jumped Caleb’s dog tags in remembrance of his service. However, it wasn’t until the day after the jump that Caleb’s remembrance was unexpectedly perpetuated on the Operation “Call-To-Service” (Episode 2) segment. The featured guests were CW5 Troy DeGolyer, U.S. Army Recruiting Command and SFC Richard Sloan with the U.S. Army Golden Knights Parachute Team. When Host CJ Machado asked SFC Sloan if he would consider jumping Caleb Smither’s dog tags to perpetuate his remembrance, SFC Sloan stunned her with his response. Sloan committed to not only jumping Caleb’s dog tags but also promised to pass them in a 9-man formation, similar to the traditional parachute baton passing. WOW! AMAZING! The segment continued with interviewing Chief DeGolyer who spent most of his Army career as an Apache pilot and served on many missions including four combat tours in support of Operations; Just Cause in Panama, Desert Shield/Storm in the Persian Gulf, Iraqi Freedom in Iraq and Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. DeGolyer has over 3,500 total flight hours and of those, 700 are combat flight hours. “As an U.S. Army aviator and Apache pilot, my primary and most important mission is to support the troops on the ground,” stated DeGolyer. After serving over thirty years as an aviator with the U.S. Army, DeGolyer was called to service for the Army’s most crucial assignment…recruitment. As the Command Chief Warrant Officer of the U.S. Army Recruiting Command, DeGolyer is the principle senior warrant officer advisor to the Commanding General. Additionally, he oversees the Army warrant officer recruitment of both aviation and technical warrant officers.

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When Host CJ Machado asked Chief DeGolyer, what does the Army offer the youth of today? DeGolyer adamantly responded,

“Opportunity…I’m passionate

LTR - Speranza, DeGolyer & Bourquin

about informing the young men and women of our great nation the many career opportunities and benefits the U.S. Army has to offer. I’m also very grateful of the opportunities the Army has given me and I’m proud to support those who choose to become an American Soldier and join the greatest army in the world.” - CW5 Troy DeGolyer, U.S. Army Recruiting Command

Thank you U.S. Army for your commitment and support of our youth and thank you Golden Knights Tandem Parachute Team for your dedicated service to our country and honoring our veterans.

To learn more about the Operation Call-To-Service program, visit: www.Call-To-Service.com To learn more about joining the elite forces of the U.S. Army, please visit: www.GoArmy.com To follow the U.S. Army Golden Knights on Facebook: US Army Golden Knights @usarmygoldenknights (photo and literary credit - U.S. Army Golden Knights) WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Honoring Service and Creating a Lasting Family Legacy Veterans Day isn’t just about the veterans themselves. Although the focus is on veterans, there are people behind the scenes making sacrifices, too. Families of veterans have learned to live without their loved ones for extended periods and how to care for these warriors when they return home. For some, their veteran may return home very different due to the challenges of mending from visible and invisible wounds of war. “I was trying to heal from what I’d been through, but my mind wasn’t responding,” said Army veteran Jeremiah Pauley. “I turned into an angry, nasty, bitter person. And worst of all, I didn’t have answers for my kids when they asked why I yelled or behaved in certain ways.” For Jeremiah, squad leader for the 1st Armored Division, the struggles began when he lost one of his soldiers — a 19-year-old who had been in the Army less than a year — in a roadside bomb attack. Jeremiah also sustained physical wounds during the attack. Because Pfc. Jody W. Missildine was one of the men Jeremiah promised he’d protect, he felt like Jody’s death was all his fault. “That day, I became a warrior coping with PTSD,” Jeremiah said. “Through surgery and physical therapy, I learned to adapt to my physical wounds. But it’s the mental and emotional wounds that truly hurt the worst. One year after the bombing, I was told I was no longer physically fit to serve my country. And I was devastated.” 12

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Three days after Jeremiah left the Army, his dad died. Six months later, his grandmother died of cancer. He hit rock bottom, and he feels his behavior led to his divorce. One night he came home to an empty house and pulled out the handgun from his closet. He finally had a plan for how to cope with the trauma — taking his own life — but he wanted to celebrate his planned ending first. After a night of drinking and getting into more trouble than he wants to admit, he woke up the next afternoon to a voicemail from Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP). He was invited to participate in the organization’s Soldier Ride®, which gives veterans a chance to connect while riding bikes.

“It was an amazing

opportunity to be surrounded by warriors who had similar experiences, and I no longer felt alone,” Jeremiah said. “That weekend, Wounded Warrior Project, much like the leaders of the Army, empowered me to become the very best version of myself.”

“I feel joy because he did a lot for our country when he served, so I take a lot of pride in that,” said Grace, Jeremiah’s daughter. Jeremiah’s kids thank him for his service “by giving him big hugs,” Jacob said, “and candy!” Grace added. And to Jeremiah, Veterans Day is a time to reflect on the importance of passing along a legacy that began with his own father. “My dad taught me about service — that if you’re ever in the position to help someone, you should do it,” Jeremiah said. “I had a patriotic upbringing and understanding that helping people is one of the greatest things you can do, and that led me to join the Army. And after all I’ve experienced, I believe that even more strongly today, and I’m passing that lesson onto my kids.”

That event changed his life. He began to constantly look for ways to improve himself. Nowadays, Jeremiah lives in the moment, cherishing his life, finding ways to serve in the community, and spending quality time with his kids. He also started eating healthier and exercising. As we mark Veterans Day, we think about what warriors have overcome and recognize how their families have been there for them. “Veterans Day means to me that it’s the day to honor the men and women who serve our country,” said Jeremiah’s son, Jacob.

About Wounded Warrior Project Since 2003, Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) has been meeting the growing needs of warriors, their families, and caregivers — helping them achieve their highest ambition. Learn more at https://newsroom.woundedwarriorproject.org/about-us. WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Spotlight

WOUNDED WARRIOR PROJECT People can change. Some felt uncomfortable leaving their homes but now can go to the grocery store. Others weren’t sure how to achieve the fitness they had in the military but now are on a healthy path. These are examples of how Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) transforms veterans’ lives so they can achieve their highest ambitions. WWP has similarly evolved to meet warriors’ needs since its founding in 2003. The organization began by providing backpacks filled with comfort items to recently injured veterans and their families in hospitals. WWP grew to include lifesaving programs focusing on mental health, physical health, financial wellness, and long-term rehabilitative care. Mental Health Because individuals respond differently to trauma — and treatment — WWP offers multiple mental health programs. WWP brings veterans together at Project Odyssey® to take on outdoor challenges. During the multi-day events, WWP helps veterans grow internally while also expanding external support structures. This program includes 12 weeks of follow-up care. Through WWP’s mental health support phone line, WWP Talk, warriors find a safe, non-judgmental outlet to help them manage PTSD, anxiety, traumatic brain injury (TBI), and other invisible wounds of war. And WWP’s Warrior Care Network® provides world-class clinical mental health care to warriors dealing with severe invisible wounds of war. Warriors receive a year’s worth of mental health care in two to three weeks at intensive outpatient programs at four partner academic medical centers. Physical Health WWP’s Physical Health and Wellness program focuses on movement, nutritional education, coaching, goalsetting, and skill-building to help warriors make longterm changes toward a healthier life. Coaching calls help warriors set personal goals, uncover challenges, and develop a plan to stay on track. And physical activity sessions empower warriors to improve their health and wellness together. 14

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The organization’s Adaptive Sports program uses modified athletic activities to increase community connections for some of the most seriously wounded veterans. Warriors use adaptive equipment, sports, and exercise routines that are specialized for their unique injury to improve their skills, confidence, independence and mobility. Financial Wellness Finding a job can be a challenge for anyone, but even more so for warriors who are transitioning back into civilian life. Warriors to Work® provides interview coaching, networking opportunities, and guidance on how to translate military skills into a civilian resume. In addition, WWP’s Benefits Service helps warriors navigate the VA and Department of Defense. WWP shows warriors how to access their benefits and walks them through every step of the claims process. Long-Term Rehabilitative Care WWP believes every warrior has a positive future to look forward to. The organization’s Independence Program provides long-term support to help the most seriously injured warriors take steps toward independence. WWP works as a team with each warrior, their family, and caregivers to build an individualized plan. The program focuses on goal-setting, social and recreational opportunities, wellness, volunteer work, education, and other life skills. In addition to giving warriors a path forward, the program gives caregivers some relief as the full team is involved in the warrior’s care.


WWP also advocates on behalf of veterans in our nation’s capital, playing a key role in changing policy on issues such as specially adaptive housing, needs of women veterans, and toxic exposure. These efforts improve the lives of millions of warriors and their families. Because no single organization can do everything on its own, WWP partners with other veteran service organizations and corporations to expand opportunities for veterans to get the care they need. Nearly 30,000 WWP-registered warriors participated in this year’s WWP Annual Warrior Survey, providing the chance to identify trends and compare their outcomes to other military and veteran populations. This year’s survey was administered at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in May and June. Many warriors face the long-term effects of their injuries daily, which can be compounded by the pandemic environment. Fortunately, warriors have a strong support system around them. Findings include:

I DON’T KNOW WHAT IT’S LIKE TO NOT HAVE SUPPORT, BECAUSE WOUNDED WARRIOR PROJECT HAS BEEN THERE FOR ME SINCE DAY ONE.

• 80% of warriors said there are people in their lives whom they can depend on to help them when they really need it. 69% also indicated that, specific to COVID-related challenges, they know where to turn to for help if they need it. • 41% of warriors agreed they have experienced challenges related to their employment due to COVID-19, and 34% reported they either have, or expect to, run out of money for themselves or their family’s necessities.

— WOUNDED WARRIOR BRYAN WAGNER

• Outside of pandemic-related findings, 89% of warriors indicated they were definitely or probably exposed to toxic substances during their military service.

• Similar to last year, 11% of warriors reported experiencing military sexual trauma (MST) during their military service. To meet warriors’ needs during the pandemic, WWP adjusted to serve warriors virtually, including at-home workouts, mental health workshops, peer support groups, and career counseling. In fact, 92% of warriors and families who participated in WWP virtual events say WWP programs are still meeting their needs — even while being held virtually. The need continues to be great. As warriors age, WWP looks to meet their new needs, while still meeting the needs of those who have been recently injured. We still meet warriors at hospitals with backpacks, with a smile and a hope for healing.

Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is committed to helping injured veterans achieve their highest ambitions. No matter where they are on their roads to recovery, WWP stands ready to serve by offering life-changing programs and services. H

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Visit woundedwarriorproject.org/donate to make a financial donation.

If you or someone you know may benefit from WWP programs and services, please call our Resource Center at 888.997.2586.

WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Operation Gratitude

Honors 26,000 Veterans: The Call to Serve and Give Back By Kevin Schmiegel COVID-19 has provided Americans with a plethora of challenges, however Operation Gratitude has remained steadfast in its commitment to bring communities together, forging bonds, to honor over 26,000 veterans this Veterans Day. With the service of volunteers, nonprofit partners, and organizations, communities across all 50 states came together to show their gratitude. Janice Chance is a Gold Star mother who lost her son Captain Jesse Melton III (USMC) in support of combat operations in Afghanistan. Recently she and several other Gold Star mothers went to the Armory in Washington, D.C. to assemble care packages filled with handmade items, handwritten letters, snacks and hygiene items. They lined up, socially-distanced, with other volunteers as part of a four-day event hosted by Operation Gratitude, a non-profit whose mission is to forge strong bonds between Americans and their military and first responder heroes through volunteer projects, acts of gratitude, and meaningful engagements in communities nationwide. Volunteers included veterans paying it forward, those who have close family ties to military members, and civilians with no ties to the military, who just wanted to show appreciation. They worked together and shared their stories and reasons as to why they volunteer. “My son loved to serve. He worked within the community growing up and I’m just so proud of what he did throughout his military service that he was able to connect with people. I wanted to carry on his legacy of service,” explained Chance. “After he died, I asked myself: what can I do with this pain? How can I be better and not bitter? I joined the Gold Star mothers who join with partners like Operation Gratitude who put together well-organized events like this one to show their gratitude for those who serve. Just like my son, every life that I can touch and make a difference is a blessing. The more that I give, the better I feel. I put together these packages and pack them with love and we cannot forget the families while we put them together. For every hero, there is a family member attached to them. We are serving through this act of gratitude and we are honoring them and I am so excited the packages will go all over the country.” 16

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Kevin Schmiegel, CEO of Operation Gratitude and Retired Marine Corps Lt. Colonel, Sherman Gillums, Jr. Retired Marine Corps Officer, Paul Cucinotta, COO of Operation Gratitude and Retired Marine Corps Colonel and Rich Headley, Senior Director of Military and Veterans Programs at Operation Gratitude and Retired Marine at the DC National Guard Armory.

Operation Gratitude volunteers assemble care packages for veterans at the DC National Guard Armory.

Gold Star mother volunteers Janice Chance, Kelly Swanson and Donna Robinson assemble Operation Gratitude care packages for veterans.


Operation Gratitudes’s veteran program is one of many programs serving Military and First Responders and consists of coordination with VA hospitals, veteran nursing homes, service organizations and other best-in-class non-profits to provide care packages to veterans of all generations. Their actions let veterans know that their service and the sacrifices they made are appreciated and will never be forgotten. Kevin Schmiegel, CEO of Operation Gratitude and a retired Marine Corps Lieutenant Colonel, recognizes the sacrifices of all veterans, including those who made the ultimate sacrifice, like Marine Corps Captain Jesse Melton III. “With each care package Operation Gratitude sends to a veteran, we will make a tangible and profound impact that goes far beyond saying ‘thank you for your service.’ We will serve as a lifeline and a connection point for 26,000 men and women who served our country and represent every generation of heroes -- from World War II to Afghanistan. This November 11th is particularly difficult because they are homebound and isolated due to COVID. I am overwhelmed with the knowledge that when they receive their Operation Gratitude Care Package filled with handmade items and handwritten letters, many of them will be experiencing the gratitude of the American people for the very first time.” Dedication to service can help citizens overcome everwidening divisions that have been exacerbated by the pandemic, social unrest, and upcoming elections. People are focused on what makes them different instead of the things they have in common, like passion for service and the belief that America is, and always will be, the greatest nation on earth. As retired Marine Corps officer Sherman Gillums Jr. said “in our lives, and in America, there is a common thread that demonstrates service to others that will bridge divides. We believe that this solidarity of service is the best way, and perhaps the only way, to show our gratitude to the brave men and women who have dedicated themselves to serving our country.”

Homeland MAGAZINE

Veteran Resources & Organizations

Navigating the resources available to veterans can be confusing, but Homeland Magazine believes no veteran should have to go it alone. At Homeland Magazine you can find Veteran organizations and private nonprofits with resources for veterans that can help ease the process of attaining earned benefits, coping with the lasting effects of service-connected injuries and finding programs and services that meet your specific needs.

Homeland Magazine Resources & Organizations available at

www.HomelandMagazine.com

Homeland Magazine A Veterans Magazine for Veterans by Veterans

For more information visit www.OperationGratitude.com or follow on Twitter at @OpGratitude.

www.homelandmagazine.com/veterans-active-military-organizations/

WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Suicide Facts 

80% of teens who die by suicide show warning signs

90% of teens who die by suicide have a mental health problem

More teens die by suicide than cancer, flu and AIDS combined

Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death in people ages 10-34

Suicide can be prevented. It’s up to everyone to learn the warning signs and reach out and help those with suicidal thoughts and feelings. National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

800-273-8255

ndbh.com/suicide Sources: National Alliance on Mental Illness; Lifespan

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Happy Veterans Day! From Honor Flight San Diego, we want to thank you for your service!

If you know a WWII or Korean War Veteran who has not been on their Honor Flight, we want them to go on our flight in 2021. There is no cost to the veteran. Please go to:

www.HonorFlightSanDiego.org to complete an application, send an email to info@honorflightsandiego.org or call (800) 655-6997 20

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Strength in numbers A team of DAV service officers come together to assist Korean War Army veteran increase VA rating By Matt Saintsing

T

he bitter, relentless Korean winter of 1951 never left Army veteran Robert Willett. In the nearly seven decades since returning home from the Korean War, he has continued to live with nerve damage from his wartime frostbite and hearing loss due to proximity to the thundering booms of 155 mm artillery cannons. After facing combat on the shores of the peninsula at the end of January, he was part of an advanced group of soldiers heading north to scout a location for a headquarters. By the time they began their trek from the coastal city of Pusan, much of the country’s infrastructure had been destroyed, obstructed or otherwise impassable. “There were no roads or bridges. They were all gone,” said Willett. “If you were crossing a river, you got wet one way or the other, and there was no real place to dry out at night.” After negotiating piercingly cold waters, frostbite took hold of his toes and feet. “I couldn’t feel anything there,” he added. “It was enough to knock me out for a while.” Willett’s tour in Korea wasn’t the first time he had worn an Army uniform. While enrolled in college in his home state of Illinois, he and a friend enlisted in the summer of 1944 to serve in World War II, and at age 18, he was selected to attend officer candidate school. Candidates were offered a choice: serve two years after completing officer training or serve one year as an enlisted soldier, said Willett. He opted to take the latter, serving in postwar France, where he and six other soldiers guarded a chemical weapons depot and German prisoners of war. Willett received service connection for his cold-weather injuries in 2004, but other ailments had gone unchecked for decades. This year, he reached out to DAV hoping to increase his Department of Veterans Affairs disability rating. Liza Perez and Jackie Graham, both DAV service officers in Bay Pines, Florida, submitted his claims for hearing loss and ringing in his ears, both of which were approved this past spring. “Jackie was looking to make sure I got all of the benefits I’m entitled to,” added Willett. “She was a jewel.”

Left: Robert Willett is pictured at the Hwacheon Dam in Korea in 1951. Above: Despite receiving benefits for his coldweather injuries in 2004, many other conditions went overlooked until DAV began helping Willett with his claim.

But the VA overlooked one claim that would push his overall rating even higher. “Somehow, the VA missed the Individual Unemployability,” Graham said. “We reviewed his case and concluded that was a mistake.” As the coronavirus outbreak intensified in the United States, much of daily life began to slow or, in some cases, grind to a halt. In May, Willett reached out to DAV via a temporary new hotline set up in the wake of the pandemic so that veterans can speak directly to service officers regarding claims assistance. Michael Rhilinger, a DAV benefits advocate in Boston, picked up the line and was able to get Willett’s claim across the finish line. “The fact that we’re working from home and DAV implemented the phone system, I was lucky enough to be next in the rotation when Mr. Willett called,” said Rhilinger. “After speaking to him, I put in a claim for individual unemployability and reached out to the VA to expedite it.” In a matter of days, Willett received the Individual Unemployability benefit he’d earned. Rhilinger credits the lightning-fast approval to the fantastic working relationship between the VA and DAV. The rating increase helped ease some financial pressure, and Willett—who has authored six books—wrote to his local newspaper in May praising DAV’s efforts. “I have recently been helped by Disabled American Veterans (DAV) through several of the service offices, and the results have been remarkable,” he wrote in his letter to the editor published in Florida Today. “I know other veterans’ organizations have similar service officers available, but I have to take my hat off to those at DAV.” n WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Spotlight: DAV

DAV Marks a Century of Service to Disabled Veterans F

rom a World War I veteran who lost both legs to a Vietnam vet suffering the effects of Agent Orange to a young Marine with post-traumatic stress disorder finding her way after returning home from Afghanistan—many of America’s veterans have lived with physical, mental and emotional injuries that impact their lives as a result of military service. They often need support with things such as navigating the complex Department of Veterans Affairs system to access veterans benefits, including health care and education benefits or identifying employment opportunities after military service. And because of their service-connected health conditions, many can be particularly vulnerable during health epidemics and economic downturns. Since 1920, DAV (Disabled American Veterans) has provided services, advocacy and camaraderie to help veterans changed in the military transition to civilian life. For the last century, this nonprofit organization has offered a range of services from assisting veterans in accessing the benefits earned through their service to finding meaningful employment and supporting their families. DAV has

From World War I through today, America’s veterans get help, advice and support from DAV, and you can be part of the solution.

continued to evolve and provide new services and support as veterans’ needs have changed. However, one tradition remains a constant: DAV’s services are provided to veterans and their families at no cost or obligation to them. DAV’s benefits advocates are located nationwide to assist veterans with accessing the health care, financial, disability and educational benefits they’ve earned. For those needing guidance on the transition to civilian life, DAV advocates provide benefits counseling at nearly 100 military installations throughout the country. They also assist veterans with filing claims for their VA benefits, as well as providing everyday support. DAV is also committed to

Without the DAV Transportation Network program and volunteer drivers like James Sabelca (right), veterans like former prisoner of war Vince Rolves, who served in the Army during World War II, would not be able to access the health care they earned through their service to our nation.

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ensuring our nation’s warriors have the tools, resources and opportunities they need to competitively enter the job market and secure meaningful employment. DAV typically helps facilitate more than 144 career fairs annually, including virtual and live events to connect veterans with employers who are committed to hiring them. DAV offers advice to job seekers on how to succeed in their careers while educating companies on the value they bring to the workforce. To find a schedule of DAV’s career fairs, go to jobs.dav.org. DAV also helps address the underlying issues of homelessness. Studies show trauma, PTSD and other mental illnesses are significant contributors to the homelessness of nearly 40,000 American veterans, with another 1.4 million at risk. DAV’s Homeless Veterans Initiative promotes partnerships between the organization and federal, state, county and local governments to develop programs to assist veterans in becoming self-sufficient. When natural disasters strike, from hurricanes to wildfires, DAV provides financial assistance to help eligible veterans and their families secure food, warm clothes and shelter and distributes supply kits with basic comfort items. In the past five years alone, the program has provided more than $3.6 million to assist nearly 10,000 victims. Another growing need is transportation to medical appointments. Since 1987, DAV We salute DAV has organized no-cost for 100 years of rides with volunteer tireless service drivers to get veterans to their scheduled and thank them care at VA medical for the work still to facilities. During come in caring for this time, DAV has America’s veterans. donated 3,678 vehicles at a cost of nearly $85 million to the program and typically provides more than 615,000 rides annually. For veterans needing household assistance or other services and those wanting to give back, DAV has a searchable online database where veterans, caregivers and volunteers can connect at VolunteerforVeterans.org. Since 1920, DAV has been a leader in strengthening federal programs, benefits, health care and transition services for the men and women who served, their families and survivors. Our advocacy efforts on Capitol Hill are guided by DAV members through the adoption of resolutions at our national convention, and last year, with the strength of more than 1 million members, nearly 40 of these critical priorities were included in legislation or other means, with five becoming law. n

Ce-Ce Mazyck

I AM A VETERAN AND THIS IS MY VICTORY.

“My victory was finishing my education.” After 38 jumps, Ce-Ce was injured in a parachute accident. Her veterans benefits allowed her to follow her dream and earn a degree. Every year, DAV helps more than a million veterans of all generations— connecting them to the health, disability, and education benefits they’ve earned. Help support more victories for veterans. Go to DAV.org.

Learn More About DAV To learn more and get the help you need, visit DAV.org.

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Give, Engage, Empower – How To Honor Veterans For Their Service Year-Round As an example of how to accomplish this, America’s By Jim Lorraine, President and CEO of America’s Warrior Partnership One of the most common phrases we hear on Veterans Day is, “Thank you for your service.” This is a muchappreciated sentiment, but we should all strive to do more to give back to veterans within our communities. Three words that can guide us in accomplishing this are “Give, Engage, and Empower.” Each of these is an excellent way to commemorate Veterans Day and honor veterans throughout the year. Here are a few ways to bring these actions to life. GIVE Back to Veterans by Volunteering and Mentoring One way to give back to veterans is by volunteering for an organization supporting veterans and their families. Our annual Community Integration Survey has found that volunteering is one of the most sought-after opportunities among veterans as a way to connect with their communities. There are many options for veterans and non-veterans to pursue in seeking to volunteer their time. For example, volunteering with a mentorship program can help a veteran adjust to civilian life. Many veterans struggle with overcoming isolation when they transition out of the military, where they benefitted from the camaraderie of close-knit units. Having the support of a mentor can help veterans overcome feelings of isolation and increase their sense of connection with their community. A great way for veterans to explore mentorship opportunities is through the ETS Sponsorship Program (www. ettsponsorship.com). Developed in partnership with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and the U.S. Army, the ETS Sponsorship program connects soldiers with trained sponsors who can mentor them as they approach the end of their military service. ENGAGE Veterans Through Corporate Military Affairs Programs Many businesses that seek to honor their veteran employees start by giving their staff time off for Veterans Day. Still, they may struggle with genuinely engaging their veteran employees and understanding their needs. Joshua Wilson, our Corporate Relationship Manager at America’s Warrior Partnership, has this to say about how companies can use military affairs programs to engage veteran employees: “Companies that support their military-connected employees will encourage long-term commitment to their organization. 24

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Warrior Partnership Corporate Veteran Initiative (CVI) partnered with a company called AGS to enhance its military affairs program. AGS painted a wall in their headquarters with the caption: ‘There Are Heroes Among Us,’ alongside photos of the veterans who work at the organization. In addition to these displays of support, AGS works with our CVI to connect their veteran employees with benefits, services, and opportunities within their community, ultimately improving their quality of life.” EMPOWER Veterans Through Collaborative Networks Empowering a veteran means ensuring they have the knowledge, means, and access to achieve the quality of life they have earned through their service. However, empowerment is something that a single group cannot accomplish alone. It takes collaboration, which is a cornerstone of our Community Integration service model. Shya Ellis-Flint, our Community Integration Manager at America’s Warrior Partnership, illustrates how this works within the Navajo Nation, where local advocate Inann Johns collaborates with the community to serve veterans: “Inann Johns, being a Navajo veteran herself, builds trusted relationships with fellow veterans on the Navajo Nation. She learns about their needs, then advocates in the community to develop partnerships that meet those needs. Collaboration has been especially critical this past year, which has been a difficult time for many on the Navajo Nation to get supplies to their homes. Inann is overcoming this by partnering with a neighboring community church to deliver household items, food, water, and more supplies to veteran families.” Starting Small As you consider the best ways to honor the veterans in your life, I hope you will consider how you can give, engage, and empower, not only on Veterans Day, but also throughout the rest of the year. A small way to get started is by supporting our annual End-Of-Year Giving Campaign at America’s Warrior Partnership. Every donation directly supports community-based programs that proactively and holistically help veterans, their families, and caregivers. To learn more, visit: www.AmericasWarriorPartnership.org/giving


Give and engage to empower veterans. Your donation to America’s Warrior Partnership will help sustain valuable programs and services that support veterans across the country. Our commitment is to connect veterans, their families, and their caregivers to the resources in their communities.

www.americaswarriorpartnership.org/giving @awpartnership #empowerveterans #give #engage #empower

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Choose a Medicare plan that serves those who served You deserve a Medicare plan that always has your back. That’s why UnitedHealthcare® has a wide range of Medicare Advantage plans designed to complement the health benefits you already receive for your service. The UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage Patriot plan includes the freedom to visit doctors and hospitals in our large network for a $0 monthly premium.

It’s time to take advantage. Learn more about Medicare Advantage plans designed to complement your VA or TRICARE For Life benefits.

1-855-322-1158, TTY 711 UHCPatriotPlan.com 26

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You do not have to be a veteran to be eligible for this plan. Plans are insured through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or one of its affiliated companies, a Medicare Advantage organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare. Benefits, features and/or devices vary by plan/area. Limitations and exclusions apply. Network size varies by market. ©2020 United HealthCare Services, Inc. All rights reserved. Y0066_200911_104349_M SPRJ59078

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Real Talk: Mental Health By Jenny Lynne Stroup, Outreach Coordinator for the Cohen Clinic at VVSD

“Thank You Caregivers” Several years ago, I had the opportunity to work with the Army’s Warrior Care and Transition Program (WCTP), the command for wounded, ill, and injured soldiers. I was an event planner for a non-profit that was supporting the WCTP during its trials for the Warrior Games. My husband had been home from Afghanistan for about nine months when I took the job and during that time, I noticed things. Things that reminded me of the briefing I sat through on PTSD. Things that were being shooed away as no big deal or me being overly anxious and dramatic. But there were things. Many of the soldiers participating in the Warrior Trials had visible wounds. Some were missing limbs, others had partial limb deformities, but some looked just like me. No visible consequence of time spent at war. I later learned these men and women, the ones who looked like me, suffered from traumatic brain injuries (TBI) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). They were included in the trials because they were using sports as a way to cope with the lasting effects of traumatic war experiences. During my time as an event coordinator, I had the privilege of staying on location. Doing so gave me extra time with the participants. I ate meals with them and hung out before lights out. I listened to their stories about how they were injured and what they aspired to do now that an active-duty career was off the table. I learned about their families, some of whom were with the soldiers because they were their soldiers’ full-time caregivers. In a lot of the stories, I saw myself. Not because I was a wounded warrior, but because what they said sounded a lot like the things I was seeing at home: lack of sleep, unexplained agitation, an adamant demand that they must sit facing the door of any building they were in. Little things, but things, nonetheless. 28

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National Family Caregivers Month

“You really made a difference here. You connected with our soldiers on a level that brought them to life. You were more than a cheerleader and a snack giver. How did you do that? How did you know how to connect with them so well?” he asked. “This isn’t the first time I’ve been around people affected by their time in a war zone. Some of the things your men and women talked about, I see at my house,” I replied. Stunned silence. Even now, as I type these words, and see in black and white how similar my home life was to the lives of the folks I worked with from the WCTP I have a difficult time acknowledging myself as a caregiver. So, in honor of National Family Caregivers Month and Military Family Appreciation Month I want to share a few identifiers of who a military caregiver is and what he/she can do to support his/her mental health. • If you do things for someone else that the individual is not able to do independently anymore, you are a caregiver. • If you are taking someone to medical appointments, coordinating medical visits, and/or managing someone’s medications, you are a caregiver. • If you are advocating for a loved one’s medical assistance or helping him/her remember important details about his/her health and well-being, you are a caregiver. You may be a spouse, a parent, or a child of a wounded, ill, or injured veteran or service member. Caregiving is not limited to a single identifier.


Your caregiving duties may often leave you feeling isolated or even a bit resentful. You may feel the pressure of financial difficulty. The extra time and attention you provide to your loved one may lead to low productivity at work or school. You may also feel it is difficult to differentiate between being a caregiver and a spouse. Many challenges arise as a result of becoming a caregiver.

As a caregiver, the love, care, and service you provide are valuable. You are valuable. And because you are valuable you deserve to take your mental health as seriously as you take your loved ones. We, caregivers, are often adversely affected by the duties we assume when we become a caregiver. When burnout, fatigue, and concern become constant companions it is time to seek help for yourself. I know reaching out can be the most difficult portion of caregiving. There never seems to be enough time for your needs. Something always seems more urgent. I get it, and I’ve been there. I also know what’s on the other side of reaching out: help. A well-supported caregiver makes a difference in the wounded, ill, or injured veteran or service member’s ability to not only recover but thrive. Thank you for what you do.

Jenny Lynne Stroup serves as the Outreach Coordinator for the ​Steven A. Cohen Military Family Clinic at Veterans Village of San Diego​. www.vvsd.net/cohenclinicsandiego The Cohen Clinic at VVSD is one of 19 mental health clinics nationwide under nonprofit Cohen Veterans Network​(CVN) which focuses on providing targeted treatments​for a variety of mental health challenges facing post-9/11 veterans and military families, including depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress, transition challenges, and more.

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MST

Military Sexual Trauma By Amber Robinson

The rumors often label the victim as a “whore” or “easy”, with insinuations that their motive was to save their reputation and not to report a crime. BriGette Paige McCoy who lives in Atlanta, Georgia, is an Army veteran, MST survivor and well-known advocate. Much of her work is with P ​ rotect Our Defenders, the human rights organization, and Women Veteran Social Justice Network, among many other projects she has undertaken to help her fellow veterans.​

According to the VA, MST includes unwanted touching, recurrent sexual harassment, coercion into sexual acts and rape. Although the problem of sexual trauma has always been present in the services, only in the last couple of decades have we come to learn just how acute the problem is. According to www.DAV.org, one in four women in the military report military sexual trauma and 1 in every 100 men.

She began her advocacy because she realized the need of survivors’ to have a voice as well as her belief that MST needed to be at the forefront of cultural change for the Armed Forces. She can speak to the issue of retaliation along with a variety of other micro-issues within the larger issue.

According to a report from the Pentagon that came out in 2019, MST reports numbers have seen a large spike from two years ago, in fact, a 39 percent raise from reports in 2017. MST advocates and researchers are not sure if this spike is due to the numbers of incidents increasing, or the number of reports are increasing.

“Military sexual trauma is problematic because it is often at the hands of a perpetrator that they know personally, report to directly, or that their commanding officer has direct authority and responsibility over,” said McCoy. “I think it creates a complex web of overlapping challenges overlooked with survivors.”

According to the Veterans Affairs Military Sexual Assault webpage, MST is a pervasive problem in the United States Armed Forces. But, according to advocates and survivors, the problem is not just pervasive, but a complex epidemic that has been ignored and unaddressed for decades.

According to many survivors and advocates, reporting is a huge part of the underlying problem surrounding MST. Victims must report to their own chain of command. For many MST survivors, their sexual trauma was committed by a person within their command who is superior to them. Often, reporting comes with different forms of “retaliation”, a word that has become prevalent in the last few years. Retaliation can start within the chain of command, or come directly from the perpetrator. It involves discrediting the victim by intimidating them, putting them on unfavorable details or rumor spreading. The rumors often label the victim as a “whore” or “easy”, with insinuations that their motive was to save their reputation and not to report a crime. Retaliation can start within the chain of command, or come directly from the perpetrator. It involves discrediting the victim by intimidating them, putting them on unfavorable details or rumor spreading.

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McCoy also states that on most occasions after an MST report, the victim must continue to serve daily with their assailant while the case is compiled, or UCMJ action is pending. McCoy goes on to say the lack of protection and validation of the victim can lead to deeper trauma and feelings of betrayal.


“It makes the work environment hostile and toxic and creates an unsafe environment for the survivor, especially if they are pressing charges and have an UCMJ case,” said McCoy. “The survivor has to perform their duties without any changes to their ability to get things done and manage the mission and the people.” Aside from the struggles that are compounded on a victim after an MST incident, there is often a life-long struggle with PTSD and associated symptoms. The isolation and invalidation suffered through an MST incident and compounded by retaliation can stay with a survivor long after they have left the unit and the military altogether. Peighton Carter served as an Army broadcast journalist on active duty and as National Guard and is a MST survivor, advocate and playwright. She says she found solace in her own struggles through an MST theater project. In an attempt to raise awareness about the problem, Carter collected the stories of MST survivors from all over the world. She compiled them into a play called “Speaking Out: Why I Stand.” The play shares the stories of 16 MST survivors, men and women. Many of the stories share the incident itself, while some focus on the betrayal, retaliation and isolation after. For Carter, she feels the project helped her out of her own isolation. “I think the most deeply impactful thing I learned as well as those who shared their stories is that I am not alone and we are not alone” said Carter.

Carter has also worked with the Women’s Social Justice Network, and both she and McCoy have taken their personal stories and voices to Congress to talk about MST. Both believe that speaking out is a must in the fight to raise awareness about MST. Most recently, the Texas murder of Fort Hood Army soldier Vanessa Guillen, has done that too. Guillen reported MST to her family before she went missing in the Spring of 2020, but stated she was afraid of retaliation from filing a report.

The Army’s attitude toward her disappearance was deeply scrutinized and ignited a more in-depth military #MeToo moment. Survivors world-wide began to speak up about the injustices of their MST cases on social media under the hashtag #IAmVanessaGuillen, which has since invoked the I Am Vanessa Guillen Act. This act hopes to revamp how MST is handled in the services. MST survivors often criticize the military reporting process, which involves reporting to a command that may have had a hand in their abuse. Formerly, the Military Justice Information Act (MJIA) sought to take reporting out of the chain of command in an attempt to make reporting less daunting. Unfortunately, the act has been vetted through Congress several times to no avail. According to an article in Military Times, The Vanessa Guillen Act hopes to not only take the reporting process out of the chain of command, but also make sexual harassment punishable crime and give survivors the option to seek Department of Defense compensation. For McCoy, Carter and all survivors and advocates of MST, this is good news. But, the military still has a ways to go in implementation of new procedures, revised training and major cultural changes to correct what some say is our military’s “biggest black eye”. To learn more about MST go to www.mentalhealth.va.gov/mentalhealth/msthome/index.asp

“Speaking Out: Why I Stand”

To hear the stories of survivors and learn more about coping go to w ​ ww.maketheconnection.net​

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Caregiving for a Person with a TBI By Roya Lackey, OTR/L, CBIS DVBIC Regional Education Coordinator This month is a time to recognize the hard work of family caregivers. A caregiver is someone who provides any level of assistance to those who may need extra help due to changes in physical or mental health. Those with a traumatic brain injury (TBI) present with a unique set of needs which may require a more specialized approach to caregiving. From 2000-2019, the Department of Defense reported 413, 858 medically documented TBIs across U.S. forces. Although the majority of TBIs are mild and recover within a few weeks or months, those with moderate to severe brain injuries often experience prolonged and unpredictable recovery trajectories. The journey to healing will look different for everyone and can span a range of changes in behavior, cognition, mood, and physical ability throughout the lifetime. The Defense and Veterans Brain Injury Center (DVBIC) provides a host of free resources accessible online to help guide caregivers of service members and veterans who have sustained a TBI. These tools cover the broad spectrum of effects seen after a TBI and offer practical strategies to help caregivers better understand and mitigate these effects. For example, changes in cognition, or thinking, are common after a TBI and can be especially challenging for caregivers to navigate. Here are some helpful tips to incorporate: • Use external cues to keep your loved one oriented: keep large clocks, calendars, and family photos in plain sight.

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Direct your loved one to use these cues instead of relying on others for simple information. Visual aids around the house can serve as helpful reminders for frequently asked questions, such as “dinner is ready at 5:00.” • Maintain a structured routine: Limit changes as much as possible. Create a daily schedule so your loved one knows what to expect. Review the schedule each morning and evening, or as needed. • Provide information in a slow and simple manner: Give your loved one ample time to comprehend what is said, and encourage them to ask others to do the same. • Provide choices: Offer two or three choices so as not to overwhelm your loved one while still allowing them to be an active decision maker in their daily activities. This can help offset feelings of frustration over a loss of control. • Take breaks: When you notice increased frustration, take a ten minute break to cool off before revisiting the task at hand. It is important to be patient both with yourself and your loved one. • Use constructive language: Provide your loved one with questions to help them find solutions more independently, such as “what could you do to find that answer?” instead of “why don’t you remember that?” • Provide alternative behaviors: For example, if your loved one becomes distracted during a conversation, say things like “please look at me when we are talking” instead of “stop looking at the TV.” It can be easier to understand concrete actions. It is imperative that caregivers be equipped with the knowledge to not only best care for their loved ones, but to also provide that same level of care for themselves. This month, take the time to share your appreciation for the caregivers in your life, even if that means showing yourself a little extra appreciation! For additional tips and caregiver resources, visit: www.dvbic.dcoe.mil


www.cdc.gov/cancer/breast/young_women/bringyourbrave/resources

BREAST CANCER IN YOUNG WOMEN Cancer is a disease in which cells in the body grow out of control. When cancer starts in the breast, it is called breast cancer. Except for skin cancer, breast cancer is the most common cancer in American women. Most breast cancers are found in women who are 50 and older, but breast cancer also affects younger women. About 11% of all new cases of breast cancer in the United States are found in women younger than 45 years of age. While breast cancer diagnosis and treatment are difficult for women of any age, younger women may find this experience overwhelming.

Foundation for Women Warriors H O N O R H E R S E RV I C E | E M P O W E R H E R F U T U R E

WHO HAS A HIGHER RISK?

Some young women are at a higher risk for getting breast cancer at an early age compared with other women their age. If you are a woman younger than age 45, you may have a higher risk if— • � You have close relatives who were diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer (particularly at age 45 or younger). • � You have changes in certain breast cancer genes (BRCA1 and BRCA2). • � You are of Ashkenazi Jewish heritage. • � You were treated with radiation therapy to the breast or chest in childhood or early adulthood. • � You have had breast cancer or other breast health problems such as lobular carcinoma in situ (LCIS), ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), atypical ductal hyperplasia, or atypical lobular hyperplasia.

When you think of veterans, do you think of women? We do... “Foundation for Women Warriors has been there for me when I needed it most. Last Spring, I was in my final If you think you aredegree at higher semester of my bachelor’s at risk, talk to your doctor. Your doctor refer you to a genetic Cal State. I was working andmay taking

counselor, recommend youbyget screened a full load of classes while raisingthat my son myself. I was earlier and more and hours consider having trouble paying forfrequently, extended care at mymedicines child’s or surgeries thatweeks can lower daycare and was only awayyour from risk. being completed with my degree program. I knew that I could not quit school and wanted to graduate on risk time.ofFoundation for Women You have an average getting breast cancer at Warriors provided me childcare assistance, mentorship, a young age if the risk factors listed don’t apply to and so much more. If it were not for this amazing foundation, you. youaare at average risk,today. it is important I would notIf be college graduate I recently for you to know breasts normally look and accepted a new jobhow andyour am now enrolled in a master’s feel. Talk to your- doctor if O., youUSMC notice any changes program.” Rebecca Veteran in your breasts. Aside from genetics, little is known about what causes breast cancer in women younger than 45 years of age.

Would you like to support women veterans?

Visit our website to learn about our mission and how you can help: foundationforwomenwarriors.org Foundation for Women Warriors is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization Tax ID no. 20-5523954, contributions are fully tax-deductible.

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A Different Lens Mental Health Monthly By RanDee McLain, LCSW

Veterans Day Many years ago, my best friend and I started calling the 6 to 8 weeks leading up to Veterans DayVeteran’s season.

This season is jammed packed with preparation and events. We prepare for the Military Women’s Luncheon, Operation Dress Code, Veteran of the Year, Veterans Treatment Court Celebrations and so much more. This year Veteran’s season looks very different. There will be no large gatherings, no parades, and little celebrations. I recently was asked what Veteran’s day means to me. It took me a few minutes to think about that question. Every year since I left the service my Veteran’s Day and Season was spent working or in some way supporting our Veteran community here in San Diego. It was only 2 years ago when I was working in a nonmilitary focused program that I had the opportunity to do what ‘I’ wanted on Veteran’s Day. I heard from a friend about a Veteran’s Day hike. This hike is called the Warrior hike and is put together by the San Diego County Parks and Recreation Department. The hike takes place on El Cajon Mountain in the El Capitan County Preserve. There are three levels to this hike: Bootcamp which is designed for beginners; Recon which is designed for more moderately experienced hikers and the Warrior which is the most challenging. The Warrior is 13 miles total. Have you ever heard the old saying our parents or grandparents would say…..”back in my day- I had to walk to school uphill both ways!” 34

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Well apparently, all those parents and grandparents went to school on El Cap! It is a beast! This is truly an amazing way ‘I’ celebrate my service. Being one with nature grounds me- it is where I find peace and am reenergized. Make no mistake- it is HARD mentally and physically, but it makes the challenge worth it. Each year, we question our decision to do it but when you get to the top there is nothing more rewarding. This is how ‘I’ chose to celebrate Veteran’s Day. There is no better feeling then making it to the top and just enjoying God’s country. It almost seems cliché, but I feel so -All American- as sit at the top with my PB & J and peak beer (IPA of course). Of course, I wear my most patriotic work out attire to top it off. Although, I am proud of my service and choose to celebrate Veteran’s Day in my own way- I know that is not the same for all Veterans. We all served differently, experienced things differently and want to celebrate differently. Some Veterans really want the big celebrations and sharing this day with family and friends. Others may prefer a quieter day of reflection. There may still be others that choose not to recognize the day at all. That is what is great about America and the rights we defend….we can all celebrate in a way that is meaningful to us. Veteran’s Day is a day special and different to each Veteran. To the Veteran’s reading this – this is your day. Choose to celebrate in whatever way is right for you!! To the allies please support the veterans in your life and their way of celebrating or not celebrating. Stay safe!! See you in Dec. Hug a Veteran - (ok social distance -virtual hugs!!)


A Veteran-led program serving our military-connected community‌including Active Duty, Veterans, National Guard, Reservists and their family members.

24/7 Access to Resources and Peer Support

Call 877-698-7838 or dial 2-1-1 Courage2Call

Visit our website at

www.Courage2Call.org

@CourageToCall @CourageToCall

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R E S O

WOUNDS WE CANNOT SEE

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder does not always allow the affected to seek help. Lend a hand and provide them with methods of help, listen and be a friend.

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Homeland Magazine works with nonprofit veteran organizations that help more than 1 million veterans in life-changing ways each year.

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Resources.

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Support. Inspiration.

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At Homeland Magazine you can visit our website for all current and past articles relating to PTSD, symptoms, resources and real stories of inspiration.

Resources & Articles available at:

www.HomelandMagazine.com

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Wellpath is looking for DVBE partners! If you own a Disabled Veteran business that might serve the healthcare industry in the San Diego area please contact Sandra Kayser to inquire about a partnership opportunity. Sandra Kayser at skayser@wellpath.us

Your Service Inspires Ours Everything we do is inspired by the military service and sacrifice of our members. We’re proud to support over 1.5 million veterans and to celebrate their service with special offers, events, financial resources and award-winning service. Join the celebration at navyfederal.org/veterans.

Insured by NCUA. Š 2020 Navy Federal NFCU 13923 (10-20)

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WHAT’S NEXT Transition to Civilian Life By Eve Nasby

Jumping Into Your Career: The BioTech Landing Zone is Waiting

As an expert veteran advisor, Mike has a few pieces of advice to help you interview better than the average veteran in transition. Be Prepared to Start (But Not Stay) at the Bottom Just what you wanted to hear, right? Even if you have been in a specialized role or leadership role in the military, prepare to start at the bottom again in the corporate world. It’s normal that those who have been responsible for a platoon, for example, will come out and expect to enter at the VP level. For some, it may make sense, and for others, that approach may seem too ambitious, aggressive and unrealistic.

Exiting the military can be about as comfortable as jumping out of an airplane at 14,000 feet with a backpack. The idea of needing to choose an industry and career path can seem as endless as the skies above, while that pressure to decide can feel like the 120-mile winds pressing against your chest in a free fall. If you are like most transitioning veterans you don’t really want to do what you have been doing, but you sense that you have no choice. Mike Peterson, Senior Manager, Global Talent Acquisition at Edwards Lifesciences would like to challenge you to consider a career in life sciences and medical technologies. Transition is Meant to be Different Mike Peterson is a passionate military supporter and volunteers as a mentor to veterans in transition. He spearheads a veteran program at Edwards that attracts, hires and retains veterans. His influence spans the company of 15,000 employees as he and his team are responsible for 60% of the headcount. He and his team oversee over 1,000 open positions all over the globe in a given year and have conducted thousands of interviews. 40

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Mike counsels those in transition with a softer, yet strategic approach. When asked where they see themselves in a potential role, he advises them to answer with “ultimately I’d like to be in Senior Management.” This approach communicates the desire to climb the proverbial corporate ladder without expecting to come in as the boss. He encourages his mentees to study their audience before going in for the interview. He explains that you must understand what is important to the interviewer,focus and then pull out your relevant experience and rather than using the ‘fire for effect’ strategy. Have Several Meaningful Stories to Tell When you tell a story during an interview, it’s important to make it succinct and relevant, while also conveying why that story is meaningful to the job. Recruiters may listen to the story and follow it, but not get why it’s relevant. Mike’s advice is to follow up your story with “What this means for you is that I can lead a team into very difficult situations successfully without missing a beat and also make an impact.” As you iterate through multiple interviews at the same company, you may get asked similar questions. Be prepared with a variety of different stories to tell that demonstrate your skills in a particular area. The interviewers will collaborate to review their feedback. You want each interviewer to have different stories and examples you shared, rather than realizing you just shared the same story repeatedly. Dave Grundies


Finally, begin your storytelling with the end in mind. Before your interview, thoroughly research the company to understand what they’re looking for, what they represent, and what skills are required for the position. Write out your stories in a “storyboard” format. You can do this by using notecards or lay out pieces of paper. Label each one with expected interview topics and add a few stories that address each topic. For example, if you think you’ll be asked to give examples about how you would drive results, label a card “Driving Results” and write out 3-5 relevant stories. You can find information about a company’s values and personality on their website or social media. Use that, along with the competencies and required skills on the job description, to help you develop content for your storyboard. Be Your Own Marketer You’ve heard it before. Make finding a full-time job your full-time job. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is your best representation of yourself. Add descriptions of your previous duties, add your skills, and make connections! Follow articles that interest you, share those articles, and even post your own. Make LinkedIn part of your daily routine. You may be surprised how willing people are to help you learn more about a particular industry, role, and even connect you to the right people. Don’t be afraid to ask to set up calls and meetings with your connections to better understand what your potential employer or companies of interest are looking for in a role. You’re your own best salesperson! Why Biotech / Life Sciences is a Great Fit for Veterans Biotech & Lifesciences may sound too complex and scary at first, but Mike says it’s surprising how many roles in biotech, biopharma, life sciences and medical devices are very suitable for the background and training of someone coming from the military. For example, Edwards has roles in supply chain, project management and HR, amongst many others. A military logistics background would be an excellent fit for a supply chain role, as you have experience in moving thousands of troops and supplies into places that are not designed to receive them. You can take those skills into an industry whose mission it is to improve quality of life and continue investing your time into the global greater good. You didn’t join the military for the money, you did it for a greater reason. You’ll transition well with a company who has that higher purpose. As you listen for the voice of the Jump Master, remember you have a choice. You have a choice of aircraft, parachute and landing zone.

Not Sure About Jumping into a Career in Bio Tech / Life Sciences? Hopefully that pressure of deciding on an industry is reducing, but if you’re now considering Biotech / Life Sciences, it’s possible you’re sensing your exit altitude just went up 5,000 feet! Where do you start? Fortunately, Karen Overklift, Education and Industry Outreach Manager at the Biocom Institute is standing by with your parachute. Biocom Institute’s Veterans Initiative program is free to military and veterans and assists with a successful transition into the life sciences industry. Also available is their Career Exploration Fellowship, which provides one on one mentoring, resume review, and assistance from Life Science HR Professionals, elevator pitch and LinkedIn profile retooling. Such experiences will immerse you into the life sciences industry, providing you with valuable connections to leaders and hiring managers throughout California. You will also receive access to exclusive Biocom events and the opportunity to connect with over 1300 companies across California. Through the Biocom Institute career lab, you will be able to see and apply for job openings and educational opportunities. This is an invaluable way to transition into the industry and be confident in your career choice. Learn more at www.BiocomInstitute.org. Finding a job in the civilian world may seem easy at first. After all, you have learned skills, practiced leadership and demonstrated initiative that will make you successful wherever you go. The reality, though, is that it can be difficult. In fact, it can be down right depressing, demotivating and you may feel totally disillusioned. The What’s Next column is dedicated to you and to helping you succeed in your transition. If you need help with your career transition, you can connect with Eve at LinkedIn. www.linkedin.com/in/eve-nasby-given-0050452 For advice, tips and programs you can read Eve’s monthly column at Homeland Magazine. What’s Next – Transition columns available at: https://tinyurl.com/yyk2v9y8

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Codes of Conduct and Workplace Ethics:

Your Anchor for a Successful Transition into the Private Sector By Paul Falcone The U.S. military is world renowned for its code of conduct, ethics, morals, and behavior befitting the elite troops that serve our nation. But did you know that the private sector has a similar code? “SOX,” more formally known as the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, came about after the stock market meltdown known as the “Tech Bust” where the Nasdaq exchange lost more than 75% of its value. The new law unleashed a panoply of corporate obligations and responsibilities to protect investors, which also impacted the day-to-day conduct of employees of publicly traded companies. When it comes to SOX, the first thing that comes to mind is financial and operational controls and disclosure requirements. And while financial measures and reforms in corporate governance standards make up a majority of SOX initiatives, documented codes of ethics are also a mainstay of the Act. To comply with SOX, publicly traded companies must publish a code of conduct, often times referred to as a business ethics statement that, in turn, must be proactively communicated to all employees. Private companies were not required under the act to publish a code of business conduct, but most caught onto the idea and were quick to adopt business conduct statements of their own. So, what’s in a typical organization’s code of conduct, and how does it impact you when the time comes for your transition to the private sector?

“SOX”

Obligation #1: Disclose Potential Conflicts of Interest A conflict of interest exists when your outside business or personal interests adversely affect or have the appearance of adversely affecting your judgment at work. Therefore, it’s critical that you disclose in writing anything that could place your company at risk, such as having an undisclosed family relationship with coworkers, customers, suppliers, or competitors of the company. Other examples of potential conflicts include accepting a personal benefit that obligates you in any way to a customer, vendor, or competitor; accepting or offering cash under any circumstances; taking a business opportunity away from your company by doing personal business with a customer, supplier, or competitor (except as a regular consumer); and having a financial interest in a customer, supplier, or competitor, other than less than 1% ownership of a publicly traded company. When potential conflicts come up, you have an affirmative obligation to disclose it to management. Full disclosure permits the organization to address the conflict and adjust accordingly. Failure to disclose, however, can result in serious discipline or even outright termination. To be on the safe side, even if you’re not given a formal disclosure form to fill out, email the issue to your supervisor so that you have an electronic record of the disclosure to protect yourself.

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Obligation #2: Protect Company Time, Property, and Supplies A critical obligation that you have to your company lies in your use of company property, including email and voicemail. Workers have no reasonable expectation of privacy when it comes to email, voicemail, desks, or lockers. Company systems are strictly for company use. Similarly, bear in mind that whatever you commit to email becomes an electronic record that remains discoverable in litigation. (As they say, the “E” in email stands for “evidence.”) Plaintiff attorneys are taking advantage of the gold mine of discoverable information available from poorly thought out emails. Your best bet? Avoid writing anything in an email that you wouldn’t put on company letterhead or on the cover of the New York Times. When in doubt, pick up the phone and call instead. Obligation #3: Create and Sustain a Harassment-Free Work Environment A code of conduct, by definition, is intended to uphold the highest standards of business ethics and workplace behavior. Accordingly, how people treat one another is arguably the most critical component of the code of conduct on a practical basis. Expect to learn about anti-discrimination laws and policies as well as “quid pro quo” versus “hostile work environment” forms of sexual harassment and whistleblower protections during training. However, putting aside all the legal jargon, follow the simple rule of treating others like you would like to be treated yourself. Respect, recognition, and a spirit of friendliness and inclusion will catapult your career and limit any potential risk, both to you personally as well as to your organization. SOX certainly caught corporate America’s attention in 2002, especially since it raised the possibility of criminal sanctions against any publicly traded company’s CEO and CFO. And while the law was intended to be broad enough to cover ethical business issues ranging from anti-trust and insider information matters to political and charitable contributions and international anti-boycott laws, its most significant contribution on a practical basis lies in establishing the norms and guidelines for how employees treat one another. Thanks to SOX, workers’ rights and responsibilities are now more clearly outlined and defined than ever before, and for that you can be grateful, both as an employee and as an investor.

Paul Falcone (www.PaulFalconeHR.com) is a human resources executive and bestselling author on hiring, performance management, and leadership development.

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BEFORE SERVED HONORABLY.

Workshops for Warriors is a nonprofit school that provides veterans and transitioning service members with hands-on training and nationallyrecognized credentials in CNC machining, CAD/CAM programming, and welding. Our students earn credentials that open doors to jobs anywhere in the U.S.

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Call us at (619) 550-1620.

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ENLISTED TO ENTREPRENEUR By Vicki Garcia veteransinbiz@gmail.com

2 Pop Up Business Platforms to Support Selling Products Online from Home Right Now Sitting at home away from family and friends? Nothing to do, no income, bored? Wake up! You’re in the middle of the e-commerce world and not taking advantage of it. If you have a strong work ethic, persistence, and a willingness to try something new, you can follow the poem Invictus by William Ernest Henleyhe “I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” All you need to do is start doing a little research on selling trends. Or investigate your own heart about what ignites your passion. Open youtube.com and view a few of the hundreds of success stories. There are many how-to videos to guide you and clue you in to the tricks of the trade. Etsy Etsy is a great place to start. The company has more than 1.7 active sellers and 28.6 million buyers. Instead of putting yourself out there in an independent website where you must scramble for visitors, Etsy does that hard work for you. Originally aimed as an online e-commerce website clearinghouse for handcrafters, Etsy was made for collectors and entrepreneurs to open a store and sell their products online. In time a decision was made to change the basic rules for sellers by including factorymade goods in the handmade definition, as long as they were unique and of good quality. This opened the door and things exploded to include to a wider range of products. You can list products for .20 each. When you sell an item, there is a small commission and standard payment processing fee. Use the Sell on Etsy App to manage orders, edit listings, and respond to buyers instantly, from anywhere. Buyers will give you reviews. You would be surprised how chummy things can get. Create your own website in minutes and make it a custom design that’s powered by your Etsy shop. 46

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Make your own designs to put on your own products using Canva.com, a graphic design app for non-artists. Etsy has tools designed for every stage of your business’s growth—no matter how big your ambitions. Shipping is easy on Etsy. Buy and print discounted postage for your orders in seconds, right from your Etsy account. More advanced tools are available with an optional monthly subscription package. You can create a sales or coupon to catch the eye of shoppers or reach them right in their inboxes with targeted offers. Crafting the perfect posts for Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, or Instagram made easy because Etsy writes it for you. You just make the connection. Boost your visibility Millions of shoppers access Etsy with their advertising tools. With Etsy Ads, your listings are more visible in Etsy searches. With Offsite Ads, Etsy will pay to advertise your listings on sites like Google, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Bing. When you make a sale from those ads, you pay an advertising fee on that sale. You can also create a store in Facebook and connect it to your Etsy store.


Starting a Business as a Veteran?

Shopify Shopify is a subscription to a software service that offers you the option to create a website and use their shopping cart solution to sell, ship, and manage your products. Since 2006, many large brands and fastgrowing companies have moved over to Shopify. Over 820,000+ merchants count on Shopify to grow and scale their business. Shopify Basic costs $29 monthly (and 2.9% + 30¢ per transaction). The Shopify plan is $79 monthly (and 2.6% + 30¢ per transaction). Shopify doesn’t sell goods to consumers. It sells to entrepreneurs who then sell to customers. Shopify provides a suite of e-commerce tools to enable entrepreneurs and small-business owners to start and run an e-commerce business quickly and simply. Because Shopify offers a comprehensive marketing suite, businesses find it easy to scale and get in front of new audiences. The platform offers SEO features, like customizable headlines, titles, and meta tags, so eCommerce sites can rank high in search results. Customers can post SEO-friendly product reviews, which also work wonders for building a business’s credibility. Dropshipping

The transition from military service to civilian life can be a difficult one, especially when it comes to your career. That’s why a growing number of veterans choose to forge their own path and become entrepreneurs after leaving the Armed Forces. While starting a business comes with numerous challenges, former service members do have one distinct advantage: the veteran community.

Shopify integrates with apps like Oberlo, Ordoro, Inventory Source, and eCommHub, making it easy to set up your business. I like Oberlo.com because of its simplicity and easy to follow directions. You’re just the middleman in charge of managing your store and marketing your products.

“The strength and power of veteran entrepreneurs comes from other veteran entrepreneurs”

This is not a comprehensive list by any means. Google “selling online,” or “drop shipping,” to find an avalanche of sites to provide a platform, educate and encourage you. Read up and do your homework. Find a platform that is comfortable for you to use and where the learning curve isn’t too onerous.

Unlike most highly competitive entrepreneurial environments, veteran entrepreneurs share information much more easily. If you or someone you know is a veteran looking to start a business, please feel free to contact Vicki Garcia. Enlisted To Entrepreneur Column available at https://tinyurl.com/y5wedv63

“I am the master of

my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henleyhe

Vicki Garcia is the Co-Founder of Operation Vetrepreneur & President of Marketing Impressions, a 30+ -year- old marketing consulting firm. Apply to join Operation Vetrepreneur’s FREE one-on-one mentoring at www.veteransinbiz.com. Join the California Veterans Chamber of Commerce for FREE at www.caveteranschamber.com Email Vicki with column ideas at veteransinbiz@gmail.com WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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LinkedIn Tips for Business

LinkedIn Tips for Business Development: Establishing Your Online Brand

By Sam Falcone

LinkedIn Tips - Part 2

The traditional narrative surrounding LinkedIn is that it solely exists to serve job hunters and individuals seeking to expand their professional network. Within the past few years, however, more and more business owners have begun to realize that this narrative is only a partial truth. In addition to the aforementioned benefits, LinkedIn Company Pages serve as a highly effective tool for strengthening a company’s brand, developing new business leads, and enhancing relationships with existing clients and customers.

you’d be surprised to learn how often a LinkedIn Company Page is incomplete, out-of-date, or provides little to no insight into the organization’s mission and goals. It’s essential that your company’s LinkedIn page includes a strong company overview (i.e., your company’s story and vision), URL to your company’s website, a clear logo and banner image (for LinkedIn’s recommended image sizes, click here: https://bit.ly/2Gefdw4), and contact information, including address, phone, and email.

LinkedIn is often one of the first places prospective clients look when they want to learn more about an organization. Therefore, it’s essential that your company’s voice and overall brand are well-articulated throughout every facet of your company page. When a prospective client visits your company’s LinkedIn page, your goal is for them to walk away with a better understanding of your organization and an increased interest in establishing a business relationship.

2. Establish a Consistent Posting Rhythm

Whether you’re a small business owner or a Fortune 500 CEO, here are five tips for establishing brand awareness, driving website traffic, and achieving your online marketing goals. 1. Ensure All Company Information is Complete A LinkedIn page with insufficient or outdated information is one surefire way of deterring new customers. While this may seem like common sense, 50

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It’s essential that, once your LinkedIn Company Page is set up, you establish a schedule for sharing content on a regular basis. For those struggling to find content to share, the Social Media Content Rule of Thirds is a good philosophy to live by: one-third of the content promotes the business and drives sales, one-third shares thought leadership, case studies, and industry news that will benefit your audience, and one-third engages your audience and humanizes your brand. The timing of your posts also plays a sizable role in determining your success. Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays tend to be the most effective days to post on LinkedIn, whereas weekends and afterwork hours typically get the least engagement and visibility. Additionally, aim to share your content between 10 AM to 2 PM, as this is often when LinkedIn traffic is at its highest.


3. Master the Hashtag

5. Paid Advertising

Before you click the post button, make sure your hashtags will garner the biggest bang for your buck. Use the LinkedIn search box at the top of the page to search for hashtags that relate to your content (similar to using Google to search for trending terms). Simply look to see how many people follow the hashtags.

It’s no surprise that posting more traditional types of ads on LinkedIn isn’t cheap. The platform’s success has made it “prime real estate” for organizations looking to post ads that garner immediate recognition and attention. It’s important to keep in mind that when you run ads on LinkedIn’s Campaign Manager platform, you’re competing with other advertisers who want to reach a similar target audience. While LinkedIn advertising costs vary, LinkedIn requires companies to bid a minimum of $2 for cost-per-click (CPC) and cost-per-impression (CPM) campaigns. On average, however, businesses pay $5.26 per click and $6.59 per 1000 impressions, as well as $0.80 per send for Sponsored InMail campaigns. Costs can ad up quickly, but the good news is that the amount you pay to advertise on LinkedIn is up to you and can be capped to meet your planned budget. To learn more about LinkedIn ad pricing, click here: https://bit.ly/3joRoAz. Make LinkedIn your go-to resource as you look to expand your business online. When utilized properly, LinkedIn can serve as a remarkably powerful tool for elevating your business.

For example, if you’re an executive coach or corporate trainer, you’ll find that #executivecoach has 1,839 followers, but with a little tweak, #executivecoaching has 15,500 followers. Similarly, #performancemanagement has 4,200 followers, while #leadershipdevelopment has 341,000 followers. See how that works? It’s in your best interest to research the hashtags before you post and ensure you’re getting the largest audience possible for each of your postings. A good rule of thumb is no more than three hashtags per post. 4. Go Live LinkedIn Live is a new feature in beta stage that provides a platform for companies to broadcast live video content to their networks in real time. You have to have a significant audience already in place and a record of posting quality content in order to take advantage of this new functionality. Further, if you commit to becoming a live broadcaster, you’ll be required to post new content on a fairly consistent basis. But LinkedIn is constantly adding new features, and if this appeals to you, visit LinkedIn’s Live Broadcasting page to learn more: https://bit.ly/36sWWXg.

There’s a reason why LinkedIn has 630 million members and is the #1 designation as a Business-to-Business (B2B) platform and lead generation network. Now’s your time to put that market advantage to good use.

LinkedIn Company Pages serve as a highly effective tool for strengthening a company’s brand, developing new business leads, and enhancing relationships with existing clients and customers.

LinkedIn Tips - Part 1 Available at: www.sandiegoveteransmagazine.com/five-linkedin-tips-for-transitioning-military-veterans/

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U.S. Navy Veteran “Doc” Oliver Transitions to Civilian Life as a Country Singer/Songwriter “My songs are strictly an outlet. My wife gave me

permission to go in the garage, drink beer, and write songs...and just to have an outlet for everything I’ve been going through,” Oliver notes. “I didn’t like individual or group therapy, everyone’s different, but I have this ability to play guitar and write, and that’s helped me process some heavy things and try to heal.” In 2019 he met Lloyd Baggs, owner of LR Baggs, who was an early advocate and ultimately ended up inviting Doc to Nashville to perform for the acclaimed LR Baggs Presents video series and also connect him with some of the top studio musicians in town to record a fully produced EP. Baggs recounts, “Doc sent me a link to a few of his songs the next day, but there was no way I was prepared for what I was about to hear. Within minutes I knew that I was personally going to do everything I could to help him bring his beautifully raw, poignant songs to a much wider audience. After hearing his songs, I hope others will be compelled as I now am to help Doc reach other brave soldiers with PTSD and stitch their lives back together with his moving music.”

Navigating life after the service can be a difficult transition, for Doc Oliver, it’s led to an entirely new path all his own. The proud father, husband, and veteran, is now also a Country Singer/Songwriter, writing about his experiences while serving, performing live shows, and recording a fully-produced EP and full album of acoustic demos. What began as a way to cope with his PTSD has not only helped him process traumatic events, but also opened up new possibilities for a career as a country artist.

Doc continues to write and record new music with plans for a forthcoming release this November. He performs in his hometown of Santa Barbara as well as throughout California, building a following of loyal fans. Though Doc’s songs speak to his experiences in the military, his music is relatable not only to the veteran community but so many more. Whether it was from hearing his music online or at one of his shows, listeners are not shy to reach out and tell him how special his songs are to them. On looking ahead at civilian life Doc notes, “I am ready to move on and do other things.” The future looks bright.

His story is one of honor, redemption, and hope. Working as a battlefield medic with multiple tours in Afghanistan, Oliver earned the nickname “Doc” stitching up wounded soldiers and civilians alike. He was honorably discharged suffering from PTSD after being ambushed and injured by the Taliban in a severe mass casualty event where he lost three of his best friends. Doc now lives in Santa Barbara, CA with his wife and three children, working as an armed guard at a nuclear power plant. He struggles emotionally reliving some of his experiences as he arms himself for his job which, ultimately, led him to turn to music. Doc created his own version of therapy with his songwriting.

To learn more about Doc Oliver, please visit www.DocOliverMusic.com WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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legal Eagle Straight-forward legal tips for Military and Veteran Business Owners By Kelly Bagla, Esq.

BUSINESS CONTRACTS POST COVID-19 Small business owners affected by COVID-19 know all too well the importance of written agreements in these uncertain times. What gets included, and what doesn’t, can make or break a small business when the unexpected happens. There are sever strategies you might consider to reduce uncertainty when drafting your own contracts post pandemic. 1. WHAT SHOULD BE INCLUDED IN YOUR BUSINESS CONTRACTS POST COVID-19? First, evaluate your past contracts to make sure the clauses or provisions that don’t work so well or left your business exposed to unnecessary losses or risks are amended or removed. Second, consider adding a ‘force majeure” clause (which is explained below) to your contracts going forward. A force majeure clause is a provision in your contract that protects your business from unforeseen issues, like natural disasters that can make it extremely difficult or even impossible to fulfill your contractual promises. The force majeure provision would allow you to back out of a contractual obligation should an extreme and unforeseeable event prevent your from fulfilling your end of the deal. In a post COVID-19 world, you may want to include a force majeure clause that specifically includes issues like pandemics or shutdowns related to the pandemic in your future contracts. Third, you might consider including an arbitration clause in your future agreements. If you had an issue with a contract and the courts were to shut down again, you could resolve that issue virtually with an arbitrator. Otherwise, you may be stuck waiting for the courts to open in order to resolve a pressing dispute. Finally, it is really important to get all your agreements in writing. Don’t rely on verbal agreements and a handshake to seal a deal. If it matters to you, then put it in writing and make sure that everyone signing the contract knows what’s in it and actually understands it.

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2. WHAT ARE SOME CONTRACTUAL DEFENSES YOU CAN USE? The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted and will continue to disrupt global, national and local commerce. Businesses in every industry have experienced, and will continue to experience, significant challenges to their ability to meet or enforce contractual obligations. Contractual defenses fall into three primary categories: Impossibility, Frustration of Purpose, and Force Majeure. a) Impossibility The common law often recognizes a defense of impossibility. A party should not be held liable for breaching a contract that they could not perform. For example, hiring Sting to perform but before the performance, Sting dies, making the contract impossible to perform. Some of the government orders surrounding COVID-19 may in fact render performance impossible. b) Frustration of Purpose Some courts also recognize a doctrine called “frustration of purpose” which is similar to the impossibility defense. Under this doctrine, performance is excused when a supervening event fundamentally changes the nature of a contract and makes one party’s performance worthless to the other. For example, if a contract called for the cleaning of the theater after Sting had performed, the cancellation of the performance frustrated the purpose of the contract. The contract can still be performed but the purpose has been frustrated making cleaning a wasted effort.


c) Force Majeure Clause Unlike the preceding defenses, which arise under common law and potentially apply without regard to the language of the contract, the defense of force majeure is based on a contractual provision. A force majeure clause excuses nonperformance when events beyond the control of the parties prevent performance. Force majeure clauses vary in their specific language, but typically list such events as acts of God, extreme weather events, riot, war or invasion, government or regulatory action including strikes, terrorism, or the imposition of an embargo. It is less common to see force majeure clauses that expressly contemplate a global health emergency, pandemic, or epidemic as a force majeure event. Due to coronavirus impact, companies need to evaluate whether their contractual performance has been impacted by COVID-19 and the governmental response to the pandemic. If the parties cannot negotiate a mutually acceptable “pause button” postponing performance, then companies should evaluate whether there are defenses to performance which will reduce or eliminate liability for breath. 3. CAN I USE LIABILITY WAIVERS POST COVID-19? Last month, I covered COVID-19 liability waivers and provided a free form for your use. Some states have granted lability protection from COVID-19 lawsuits for businesses. If you are going to use a liability waiver for your business, you may want to check that the terms are clear, unambiguous, and fair. The other party needs to understand what they’re agreeing to when they sign it. A liability waiver will not necessarily protect your business from intentional, reckless, or grossly negligent conduct, so you may want to ensure that your business abides by local guidelines.

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Disclaimer: This information is made available by Bagla Law Firm, APC for educational purposes only as well as to give you general information and a general understanding of the law, and not to provide specific legal advice. This information should not be used as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.

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Legally Speaking Military Focused Family Law Facts By Tana Landau, Esq.

Veteran Disability Pay and Divorce: What is There to Lose? If you are a Veteran receiving VA disability compensation, you may be concerned about how much of that income you may lose during a divorce. While each state has different laws governing divorce, child support, and spousal support, there are federal laws that every state must follow. These are some of the questions you may find yourself asking if you are going through a family law matter. Can Disability Benefits be Divided as Property When I get Divorced? No. Under the Uniformed Services Former Spouses’ Protection Act, VA disability payments are exempt from being treated as marital property. This means it is not an asset which can be divided at divorce. Will VA Benefits be Considered as Income for Purposes of Child Support and Spousal Support? Yes, VA disability payments are considered as income for calculating child support and spousal support. In Rose v. Rose, 481 U.S. 619 (1987), the U.S. Supreme Court found that VA disability payments were intended not just for the veteran, but as the law stated, to “provide reasonable and adequate compensation for disabled veterans and their families.” The Court concluded: “Congress clearly intended veterans’ disability benefits to be used, in part, for the support of veterans’ dependents.”

Therefore, although your VA disability benefits cannot be divided by the Court as property, the Court will consider it in determining how much child or spousal support you must pay. Can My Disability Benefits be Garnished? Yes, there are circumstances where VA disability benefits can and do get garnished (in other, words a portion of your disability payment can be taken directly). If you fail to pay child support or spousal support your disability payments can be garnished, but only when you’ve waived part of your military retired pay in order to receive VA disability benefits. So if you waived part of your taxable military retirement to receive nontaxable disability compensation, your disability benefits can be garnished to meet alimony and child support obligation. This is because the purpose of VA benefits is to provide support not just to a veteran but to his/her family as well. How Much of my Disability Benefits Can be Garnished? Typically, between 20% to 50% of your disability pay can be garnished depending on your support obligation. However, only the portion of your disability income you are paid in place of your military retirement can be garnished. The remainder of disability pay cannot be garnished and is protected.

Veteran Disability Pay and Divorce It is important if you are a veteran going through a divorce that you have a clear understanding of how your disability compensation may be handled during the process. 56

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Time for a Fresh Start.

Will a Garnishment Ever be Denied? Yes, under certain circumstances a garnishment to a former spouse can be denied if:

Move forward without breaking the bank. Our military expert family law attorneys are ready to push your case to the finish line.

1) The garnishment was to cause undue financial hardship. 2) The veteran’s former spouse or child has not filed for apportionment. 3) The former spouse is living with or married to another person. 4) The former spouse was found by a state court to have been guilty of infidelity (in an “at fault” state). What is an Apportionment of VA Benefits? Apportionment is when the VA divides up your veteran’s disability compensation amount among those who are entitled to a share of it for support purposes. The VA will pay your former spouse and/or children a part of your veteran’s disability payment directly, thus reducing the amount of benefits you will receive. Your former spouse must file for apportionment from the VA for themselves (if spousal support is ordered) and for any dependent children (for child support). The VA will require both of you to submit a financial statement to determine if an undue hardship will be caused. It is important to note that you can also file for a hardship reduction in apportionment if you are unable to meet your basic financial needs at any time. In addition, the VA will not approve a garnishment in any case where a request for apportionment has not been filed.

Military Divorce and Retirement, 20/20/20 Spouse, Survivor Benefit Plans, Support Orders, and more. No nonsense. No hidden fees. Discounts for service members.

If My Benefits Can’t be Garnished, Can My Former Spouse Still Ask for an Apportionment? Your former spouse can ask for the VA for an apportionment for child support even where your VA disability benefit can’t be garnished. You do have the right to object to the apportionment even if you have been court ordered to pay child support. It is important if you are a veteran going through a divorce that you have a clear understanding of how your disability compensation may be handled during the process. Remember that each state has its own laws and, if you are receiving veteran disability pay and going through a divorce, you may want to consult with an experienced family law attorney to help you understand how your income may be affected. For more information about protecting your disability pay during a military divorce, check out our website: www.frfamilylaw.com or call (858) 720-8250 and ask to speak with military family law attorney Tana Landau.

Call 858-720-8250 or visit www.frfamilylaw.com to schedule a free consultation. Flat-fee law packages available.

Legal Experts with Humanity WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Veterans Chamber of Commerce By Joseph Molina www.vccsd.org

VETERANS AND THE BENEFITS OF NETWORKING Making connections and building relationships with people is vital to the growth of your business. It goes without saying that if you want to travel fast, go alone; but if you want to travel far, go with others. Ironically, networking – building connections and relationships and developing trust – with others is a fast track to developing a successful business. Networking helps with building relationships, becoming part of a community that share common goals and/or ideologies with you. Is Networking Beneficial? There are many benefits that are associated with networking as there are many networking groups today. Chambers of Commerce afford many benefits to it’s members. From supporting your business with resources to setting up opportunities for members to connect and promote each other’s business. Networking helps with business development and provides a platform for you to identify those who may support your vision, establish partnerships and potentially drive new customers to your business. The key therefore is to find the right Chamber of Commerce or networking group that “fits’ with your business and your networking style. Let’s look at some of the benefits of networking at a local Chamber of Commerce How to Network Despite the amazing benefits associated with networking, many people still find it difficult and do not know how to network, many of them still think that networking is selling, and it is far from that. Networking is about establishing business relationships with likeminded individuals who may be interested in connecting further with you. The Networking Mindset For some, networking is easy; while for others, it can be more difficult. Keep in mind that everyone in the networking group is hoping to connect with others and each is interested in what others have to offer. 58

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Entering to a networking group with the mindset such as “I am here to see who can buy my product” is just the wrong approach. Entering a networking group with a mindset of collaboration, helping others and looking for ways to partner with other members is a much better mindset. Best Practices 1. Expand your perspective Talking with members of the group, engaging in activities, participating in community focused events are the best ways to “give back” and be recognized in the community. If your business serves the local community, there is no better way than getting involved with your local chamber and participate in the events that the chamber organizes. This approach will fast-track your business connections and become more visible in the community. What if your business serves a wider region than just a local community? We know that joining a Chamber of Commerce may be expensive, find out if they offer Military/Veteran benefits or discounts. The National Veterans Chamber of Commerce has created “Partnerships” with civilian Chambers of Commerce who accept and recognize The (FREE) National Veterans Chamber Membership giving the veteran the advantage of Dual-Membership. Check with your local chamber or contact the National Veterans Chamber of Commerce for a list of Veteran-Friendly Chambers. 2. Helps with Growth Another benefit of networking is that it allows for an increase of connections and resources that will help your business prepare when ready to grow. 3. Get More Visibility Participating in Community based activities, collaborating with the Chamber and participating with other local networking groups is the best strategy to become “visible” and for people in the community to know who you are and increase the likelihood of becoming your customer.


4. Support from Sr. Members Networking with your local chamber could turn out to be very beneficial. Many of the senior members are very supportive of Veteran Entrepreneurs and often are willing to share their business experience and resources to help you succeed. Network groups are known to hold conferences or activities where prominent individuals are invited; these persons can also be of help.

Do some simple research online about the group, their focus, what they believe and how they help their members. Keep in mind that most networking groups have a specific focus and finding a good match is critical for your business. Contact The National Veterans Chamber of Commerce www.vccsd.org if you need assistance in identifying a good group in your area.

In Summary: • Know Your Goals Before you start networking, the first thing you want to do is know why you want to join a Chamber of a networking group. Know what you want to contribute to the group and what you expect out of the group. Keep in mind that all of these groups have fees and some are expensive, choose wisely.

The Veterans Chamber of Commerce Radio Show

Other networking groups to consider:

• Would you like to share your story?

• Would you like to Nominate a Hero in your Community? Let us know and we will announce it on the show.

Be our guest on the show.

• Rotary clubs • BNI • MEETUP groups •Facebook groups •LinkedIn groups Deciding on a Group Search for a group that supports your goals and values. Ask questions and get recommendations from trusted people.

Here’s our REQUEST FORM for you to fill out and send back to us. If you have any ideas or project that you would like to see Developed by the Veterans Chamber send your idea to: veteransccsd@gmail.com Request Form - www.vccsd.org/radioshow.html WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Celebrating Impact: Shelter to Soldier transforms the lives of veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress By Kyrié Bloem Shelter to Soldier (STS) has served the veteran community in Southern California since 2012, but has experienced its largest year of impact during 2020. In light of COVID-19, the depth of suffering that has plagued the veteran community who have been victimized by Post Traumatic Stress (PTS), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) and other mental health diagnoses has been exacerbated by the sudden and drastic change in lifestyle associated with COVID-19 regulations and uncertainty. Feelings of isolation, hypervigilance and job insecurity have contributed to a “perfect storm” that has significantly threatened the mental health of veterans. With support from the community, sponsors and donors, Shelter to Soldier continues to be a guiding light during a time of darkness for veterans in need throughout Southern California. To date this year, the Shelter to Soldier team has graduated five veterans with service dogs, with a goal of graduating ten veteran/service dog teams in 2020. Five additional Emotional Support Animals (ESAs) have been placed with veterans in need. The STS program is currently training 14 veteran handlers working toward graduation with a psychiatric service dog, and five veterans who will soon graduate with their ESAs. In January 2020, Teri McConnell, US Navy (Ret.), graduated with her service dog, Riddler. Teri describes her service in the US Navy, “I was an ET2 in the Navy focusing primarily on communications repair and maintenance. I deployed on the USS America for her maiden deployment where we visited many beautiful ports such as Hawaii, Guam, Singapore, Kota Kinabalu (Malaysia), Bahrain, Dubai, and Eliat (Israel). We operated in the Red Sea while our troops participated in operations in Syria.” After returning home from deployment, things took a very downward turn for Teri. She explains, “I was constantly on the tipping point of rage at everyone and everything that reminded me of the accident and a friend’s death. I started to have night terrors where I would wake up screaming two-to-three times a night. I started avoiding sleeping at night because that was the worst time for me. My anger and guilt spiraled into depression. My fear and mistrust built into intolerable anxiety. 60

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The slightest upset plans or unexpected sound would make it hard to breathe, my chest felt heavy, and I’d shake uncontrollably. I’d break down crying in public, curl up into the fetal position on sidewalks. I was medically retired and stopped leaving my house entirely. Two months before my retirement finalized, I attempted to end my life and I was hospitalized. My life had become everything life shouldn’t be.” She sought the help of Shelter to Soldier for support, where the program paired and trained her with service dog, Riddler. Teri articulates about Riddler, “I’d be lying if I said he was a magic-pill that made everything perfect. However, it’s no exaggeration to say that he [Riddler] has made everything better. I still don’t like going out in public but I can go out when I need to. People tend to give you a larger buffer space when you have a service dog with you. When they don’t, he’s trained in commands that use his body to create a space between me and people that make me uncomfortable.”


He literally watches my back for me when I can’t stand with my back against a wall. One of the unexpected benefits of having him [Riddler] is the impact he’s had on my social life. He’s an adorable yellow lab so I am frequently approached by people that are curious about him and think he’s just the most handsome dog ever (which he is). While I am generally uncomfortable speaking with strangers, I love to talk about Riddler. He’s a conversation topic that I feel safe with and it allows me to have many more successful interactions with people than I have been able to have in years.

At night, when I get my night terrors, I’m gently woken up with a few worrying nuzzles. He lays on my chest and performs compression therapy to calm me. Now, I’m not afraid to sleep because I don’t wake up in abject fear any more. I wake up feeling safe and loved and protected by Riddler.

When my anxiety starts to spiral, he distracts me with love or play depending on what is appropriate at the time. He often picks up on my anxiety before I do.

Shelter to Soldier saved my life quite literally. It wasn’t just Riddler that helped me start to take steps towards progress. It was also the family of support offered by the trainers and staff. I am beyond grateful for absolutely everything this program and these people have given me. What I went through is only one story. So many of our servicemembers have their own stories that have left them feeling like they’ve lost the things that made the world a place they feel comfortable being in.

These people are sons, daughters, wives, husbands, mothers, and fathers. There is a sort of domino-effect that happens when you help save one of us.” www.sheltertosoldier.org

Riddler

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FREE ASSISTANCE DOGS FOR VETERANS Our assistance dogs master more than 40 commands to assist veterans with disabilities with daily tasks. DONATE. APPLY. VOLUNTEER. cci.org/veterans info@cci.org 800.572.BARK

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THIS IS OUR CALL OF DUTY.

For nearly 70 years, Father Joe’s Villages has been taking care of the immediate needs of homeless Veterans, while also helping end their homelessness for good. Call 1-619-HOMELESS or visit NEIGHBOR.ORG to learn more.

WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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READY TO TAKE CHARGE OF YOUR CAREER? Talk to our friendly veterans admissions counselor today! admissions@icohs.edu (858)581-9460 www.icohs.edu Become a certified IT professional in 15 weeks with no prior experience necessary!

Why ICOHS College?

Career Outcomes:

• GI Bill & MyCAA Approved

• Technical Support Specialist

• Flexible Schedule

• IT Support Technician

• Online & In-person Hybrid Classes

• Network Administrator

• Small Class Size

• Network Analyst

• Hands-on Training

• Systems Administrator

• Lifelong Job Placement and Career

The median IT job salary in the US was about $88,000 last year.

Counseling

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www.homelandmagazine.com

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Choose a Medicare plan that serves those who served You deserve a Medicare plan that always has your back. That’s why UnitedHealthcare® has a wide range of Medicare Advantage plans designed to complement the health benefits you already receive for your service. The UnitedHealthcare Medicare Advantage Patriot plan includes the freedom to visit doctors and hospitals in our large network for a $0 monthly premium.

It’s time to take advantage.

Learn more about Medicare Advantage plans designed to complement your VA or TRICARE For Life benefits.

1-855-322-1158, TTY 711 UHCPatriotPlan.com You do not have to be a veteran to be eligible for this plan. Plans are insured through UnitedHealthcare Insurance Company or one of its affiliated companies, a Medicare Advantage organization with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in the plan depends on the plan’s contract renewal with Medicare. Benefits, features and/or devices vary by plan/area. Limitations and exclusions apply. Network size varies by market. ©2020 United HealthCare Services, Inc. All rights reserved. Y0066_200911_104349_M SRPJ59083 66 WWW.HomelandMagazine.com / NOVEMBER 2020

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Homeland Magazine Nov 2020  

Military Veterans Publication - Resources, Support, PTSD, Transition, Veterans, Active Military, Military Families

Homeland Magazine Nov 2020  

Military Veterans Publication - Resources, Support, PTSD, Transition, Veterans, Active Military, Military Families

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