Mistress Carrie Side Piece Episode 6: Brigadier General (ret.) Jack Hammond Home Base Program Executive Director

Wednesday, June 14th

Mistress Carrie sits down with Brigadier General (ret.) Jack Hammond Executive Director of the Home Base Program, to talk about PTSD Awareness Month, our troops, their families, research and treatment of Post Traumatic Stress, and Traumatic Brain Injuries, the Run To Home Base, and their relationship, since meeting in Afghanistan in 2011, when Mistress Carrie was embedded with the Mass. Army National Guard.

More about Gen. Hammond:

During his distinguished 30-year military career in the United States Army, Brigadier General (ret.) Jack Hammond has commanded troops at the Platoon, Troop, Battalion and Brigade level both at home and abroad, including Afghanistan in 2002, Iraq in 2003, and Afghanistan 2011-2012. In July 2011, Hammond became the first Massachusetts officer to achieve the rank of General in a combat theater since World War II.

After a brief deployment to Afghanistan in 2002, General Hammond deployed to Iraq in 2003 with the invasion force and simultaneously commanded two Battalions: Task Force Patriot in Balad performing stability and security operations, and Task Force Enforcer, in Fallujah conducting counter-insurgent operations. In Kabul Afghanistan 2011-2012, General Hammond commanded Task Force Yankee as the senior U.S. Commander for Kabul Province, and was responsible for a multi-national security force of 3,000 personnel, providing security and support for 11 U.S. installations, and 10,000 coalition members conducting counterinsurgency operations, humanitarian assistance and area support missions.

General Hammond is the recipient of numerous military awards including: the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with Oak Leaf Cluster, Bronze Star Medal, Army Commendation Medal for Valor with Oak Leaf Cluster, French Medal of National Defense, and Bulgarian Medal of Mission Support.

A native of Reading, MA, General Hammond holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Massachusetts, a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Marketing from Boston University, and was a National Security Fellow at Harvard University.
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Transcript - Not for consumer use. Robot overlords only. Will not be accurate.

Again got this thing happen and you don't hear it. Was a volume down yet awesome and now. Mistress Kerry's side in peace podcast she's a woman until sure viewers know check on WB AES dot com. Until woman. Welcome to my pod cast. Like in there it's right here here now an official site pieces of episode six of mr. Kerry's side he's podcast. And let me introduce you to everybody and a very old friend of mine general Jack Hammond executive director of the home based program. It's great to be nick carry in the we're in better places them we've been in the past. Exactly so that kind of let everybody know. You and I met in 2011 and actually when. I was embedded with the mass army National Guard and have to stand. And when you came home he retired from military service but she became the executive director of the home based program which is an organization and I've. And volleying and volunteering for urban working with for a number of years so it was awesome that I meet you in one way. And now we you and I still know each other the other way. We can continue to serve for in perpetuity now. And you don't have to Wear uniform to work every day I get to where I sculpture and younger used today is it weird that you have to decide which are gonna Wear to work every day after how many years of service in the military it was one of the strangest things and somebody asked about that the other day as well. You know in the military is like or animals. Coming in a way as the multi cam ones in my gonna Wear the green ones but everything's already sorted out you just pick one. And this to make sure it's clean usage and VMware and comfortable boots nice thick socks and multi cams are due to use or whatever ace uses of that camouflage uniform of the day is is probably more it's a grim for jams yes they are comfortable. You always have pockets Alia and then that now is action where big boy clothes and I don't have to buy big boy clothes and you have to worry about to my shoes matched as my shirt matched cells and news. And pay occasion of a stop to walk out with some my wife Colleen a look at me and just say well now. I'm why why why would do this. You of the military. 31 years 31 years when did you go win I would IAX in listed in the guard. My sophomore year college. And then an 84 and I graduated I want an active duty and those on active duty until 2012 when I retired. Wow that was a long run and I joined the a I joined with the intent of doing like 34 years and that was that there's always those people. You joined the guard. Not only because you wanna serve your country but what you want to get an education and you land learn a skill come out with work experience. I'll learn leader share up all of the things that military service teaches you. And it's you stay and and then you wake up one day and it's 31 years. It's amazing I and I and I joined for that reason. It always felt wanted to serve. I had an opportunity to West Point eight at declined. I looked at RTC. And I was gonna in the army through that night and at the run around. And I I went over and talked to a slight chance and an army National Guard recruiter and they told me since I was gonna UMass there was a 100% free tuition. Before you went to basic training like today I signed the papers free tuition. Until monitor the Salvation Army at half and what is West Point it is late seventies and the army news and pretty much a great deal disarray. And it's it just wasn't I was ready I guess yeah and I knew I it was one of those things I was very interest in the military OI group around the world with two greatest generation my parents grandparents. Local and all that stuff. I aides spent you know he's spent a summer fort sill when I was eight and spent another summer in Germany was an uncle. Who's of career officer. I'm but it's just there to do just so many negative depictions of it it wasn't something that excited me and but halfway to college or Rios it was for me. And I wanted to finish college obviously it's like I start with a garden that's why when an uptrend on active duty in 84. I jumped on baton. Again that was going to be for three or four years right and it. They alone do when I grow up and frankly I spoke openly about notes when you say you nasty means in mass we got an Amherst I spent some time neighbor vaulted Boston look at it. You know is one of those things I I was wrestle on the airplane across there. And I showed up at school periodically. Probably ask the most stellar student. That's probably keep a lot of the reasons. I think pretty much anybody that's ever gone to college in Boston anywhere has had that struggle. You Wear like I get another class. There's so many other option right I mean when I was in school we knew exactly how much. Each hour of class was worse like how much it cost us out of pocket. And that was the motivating factor to get out of bed like well if I skip this class it's gonna cost me 500 and eighty dollars or whatever I was paying for most of my school myself so. They hit yeah you know I get out. I was working 30000 we Pam pardon them and be an opportunity to guard was just a great one. N day and I'm I've met some wonderful people met my wife the foot from. Hewson issues lieutenant when we met. And you know as most things he wants to stay a few more years of threat in years and in other day the lot of interesting assignments and opportunities and as you get those just keep stay longer until you're not having fun. It seems to be this is a running theme this is episode six of the podcasts and it seems to be this common thread no matter who I'm talking to him. That one decision you make in your life. And most likely it's a flippant decision. That changes the complete trajectory of your entire. Life and for you or your like are showing its own. You know tuition and then I can go to school for free amateur join the guard Albion for a few years not only does it become your career it's taking you all around the world and introduce Judy why if and literally put two and a position at as the executive director of the home based program now it changed every aspect of your light without one decision. You donated I think for folks like you myself and a lot of people. You get these opportunities and they say the window opens and closes. And you have to have the guts to step through it yeah and I there are times where you know someone asked me hey we need to me go to counterterrorism school. Sure. Or did inciting rag I got are a strong background in terrorism. And I didn't think anything of it it was just some great assignments a lot of interesting fund. It led to. The the stuff I was able to do in Iraq in 2002 and 2003. Well I counterterrorism. Expertise back in the day. Would you have thought that it was going to be as necessary in the world in 2017 has it was. What in the late eighties early ninety's you know it is. Indeed based on the courses I went through in the training or went through we knew it was coming. And that was a scary part but you know it's one of those things we talk about a beat you know it's like anything else it's it's not. It wasn't as well accepted by a lot of folks of expression back then was we knew was gonna happen it was when not if right. And for you know after it spent and you know that's at the conditions for Iraq David that I was able I was really fortunate get all these decisions lead other ones. They got me to be you and I was able to teach if the three years undergraduate degree. That enabled me to apply for program. At Harvard a few years later and spent years studying terrorism and Harvard and you know 20067. Which. Further prepared me for eleven and twelve in Afghanistan which is when we met which is when we met and almost none of it you know if you didn't step two door. When it was open. And that opportunity presented itself as host help people at some comes up you have a shot at it take a shot. Was sourcing and happened. If you don't take advantage of one of those opportunities. You can't even imagine where you could end up that future you can't even imagine it. As even being possible and then. You turnaround one day and you go oh my god. I never even dreamed that I'd be here those are the moments I had overseas. You know that I I wake up and I get out of bed in Iraq are a wake up and I get out of bed and I'm in the middle of Kabul rule and it's like how the hell. Did I get here but it's all of those little decisions as leaders LH. Rice is yeah along the way I actually haven't won those moments people talk about because I started out as an empty in the army. I vaunted transition and become a calvary officer and had a all these schools and become a tank commander in all these things in and I served as an infantry officer for years. A time I got to Iraq has commanded an MP task force in Fallujah. And I had military police cavalry and infantry assigned to me. And I've served in every one of those jobs have been trained in every one of those jobs. And that is an atypical career for somebody it's it's pretty strange how many people do that it at the right time in the right moment I had the skills that. Because I tried something new I wanted to try something new and the pieces came together in my life made sense because up until then it's like he's an keeps it work and keep going from branch to branch and trying things noon and it all came together and again at least for the further stepping stones like that gives an opportunity. Arm and have that opportunity at home base when ever decided to retire. Was amazing because as you know we've we've moved we all have good friends that we've made over years and deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan. We've seen the impact. Inning coming home I wanted to be able to do something about it and out of the blue I just made a decision to retire could stay in another five years calling dissent and one day. Is there anything left you wanna do the haven't done and I couldn't think of anything I dropped my. 02 weeks later three weeks later. I'm at Kennedy school Harvard taken a course in a friend says. They put in the that via her to retire and it's again it's that you put into that job the Red Sox I started laughing like we need to pizzicato. And they said they're looking for retired general officer. Not to lead this great program and reached out to a mutual friend Mike Allard via an estimate there are seriously consider and that the minimalist be considered him. Frankly you know next chapter in my life and really paving way for a long time for his. Have an opportunity to help some of the folks that really. Could use some assistance yeah because they did so much for us before. Aegis can answer that the question I was gonna ask you a lot of time when I have somebody in whether they be in the navy seal or whatever I always ask the question. What was harder. To get there or walk away from. So for you was it harder to get a star become a general or was it harder to give it up after 31 years and it sounds like. It was a pretty easy decision to give it up at that point in your life. You know and in a way it was is you know it's and Ewan says that I've I've planned onion in general and I got there immediate pretty maniacal and a dad yeah. It was more happenstance and frankly a lot of that was going on while I was in early in the early stage of Afghanistan it's a pretty. On competitive process and review process that those who dissent it via. And at any point somebody can frag you that didn't like human I'm you know obviously I never viewed my job the popularity contest and in trying to win one. But there's a lot more politicking that goes into. Our rank. Like that in the military I think anybody that did know anything about. Military structure would realize there was mama and almost some come from you can disqualify yourself by. Something you do we'll just knocked out of the running rang but but my case you know having the combat assignments commands it early really set me apart it's just. Timing and good luck in a lot of cases. I was kid more ball lead the troops and and being with soldiers and an operational missions in in you know having to be negligent that combat really. Was more important me than anything else and haven't done. And so when I got home really my future would have been. Office already got a lot of office time. If I got none of the Pentagon as the ones are gonna chase coffee for a three star. And and and and my wife knew me better than nine to myself that points and you won't be happy via at that point it looked at and sit in on it had a great career has been 31 years. I am ready for something new a new challenge and it was a short it was and then when that opportunity. Became possible that help folks at again we we bowl we all know them we have seen too many folks. I've lost more guys since we came home that I lost in three combat assignments yeah and so. If we can we can affect that way you know. That's not working right it's it's a passion. It's it's a life's purpose. I think for some folks who retires generals. He shut that off and they don't have something that gives them a sense of purpose via it can be hard as you go from being at the top of the heap. You know really leading big transformer of organizations. The suddenly announce you the dog hit a golf cart. And you know you're you're living in the east sometimes you can live in the past. Inkling to close to a if you get new challenges that kind of take you for it it's almost any career. It goes into the work that the home based program Diana's. Because for anyone that's been in the military. Even people that haven't ban I have that personality trait is well. I constantly have to be mission focused I have to be moving forward. Towards a goal in if I'm not like a shark shark always has to be moving forward to survive. And it's a personality type and it's a personality that. The military tracks for obvious reasons and when that is gone whether it's you just get out of the military. Whether you're injured and can no longer serve whether you retire. That sense of purpose. That yearning for a Michigan doesn't go away just because you're putting nine degrees when you go to work in the morning instead of a uniform. And so I think trying to combat the PTS deep problem. And move forward in trying to two. Give these guys emission coming home. It's in recognizing. That loss of a mission and and a lot of civilians kind of don't understands. Why they need a mission in the first place that's tough. Because I think that this is in this two pieces for the guys and gals coming home from the service you lose your sense of purpose and mission. It then the other part as you get detached from any team you tried. And I've talked to sports guys like Tim Wakefield. Who said when he left baseball's first time since his eight years old it was not team. Yeah and it hit him. And hits all of us he said does that have new guys and sequestered as he has. You know who do you talk to about it in a what does he talked to about baseball maybe I missed being a professional baseball player would you do. And they can't they can't really relate to his life and everything else and the military folks you you leave a place like Afghanistan or Iraqi come home to transition. Yeah it's it's difficult to talk to anybody about some of the stuff that you saw you experienced because there's nothing to compare it to an America. And so now also and you can you could be the weird friend this talking about the creepy stuff. Where you just shut up and you become further isolated. Well it's it it would feel like trying to explain to someone. That grew up an only child. What it's like to grow up one of eight siblings. And you take a person that's grown up as one of eight siblings and you automatically make them an only child and vice Versa that transition and doesn't work it doesn't work now and trying to explain it. You know it's always been my experience of all of the all of the people that I met overseas that. You know when they all get back together again. Just talk about the old times art joke about how other people don't understand them either. You're all of a sudden back in her group again and you belong again in his someone else understands CO. In his and healing peace to that and that's why you bet the reunions is so popular and and and anytime there's a veteran of that whether it's wounded that ride. When there's a tougher that you do you know two great events you probably can't wipe the smiles off their faces even though they're rock and out 26 miles. It is because they're back with their tribe and they feel good about it you know. And so that's part of what we've got to do his country is wrap around wrap our arms around these folks when they come home and help them with that transition. I'm does a great book by Sebastian younger called tried. And he really gets to that where. Throughout history people have been inherently known when the war is come home you better receive a while it's not gonna end up good for anybody. And so they do also to rituals and stuff and it really wasn't till the 21 century halfway through the twentieth century we stopped being good at it. I'm world what to every everybody knew everybody served in some way. But now where half of 1%. Goes over Iraq and Afghanistan and they get poured home into the 99 point five. Really don't understand what they experienced. I'm half the people don't even know we're still fighting everyday and we have so many troops heavily engaged in common even as we speak today. And that's stings them as you know we we had on that a major mass casualty attack. In Kabul back in 2011. A we lost seventeen folks in one attack. We defended the US embassy. And in an eighteen hour attack that happening while I was hair and when we get home someone said but he embassy was under attack. Somebody that fought for eighteen ousted defending embassy and find it unbelievable. That a people American didn't know one of our embassies was under attack for eighteen hours. It was the first time that embassy had ever been attacked and we literally the guys I was embedded with were there that day. Visiting all the guys from Massachusetts who were on duty. At that embassy. And we literally rolled out and by the time we got back to camp Phoenix which is where we were based on of they're like hey the embassies under attack you guys got to go back in everybody's are you kidding me right now. And nobody back home even any I had any idea was going on in it was it was a pretty serious battle and and the terrorists are trying to make a statement. By you don't attack an embassy for any other reason than you're trying to make ST it's a huge target. And it very well protected target and it should have been something that everybody knew about it is sort of on the national news and when we got back after being nor their for three weeks to really get we were at the embassy right before it got attacked and like you said everybody is at the embassy. What is the pictures of what it looked like five hours before the attack is. That's where we were her. And so the challenge they have is now also in the questioned whether and its service was worth it right he is if people didn't know what happened it's like a tree falls in the woods. And then they think about the fact they lost friends and they still losing friends but sit back and add to the injury. On that we hope to try and a system went by getting memory connected to positive stuff and you know. We get the it's terrible to save and in some ways you got to find a new focus you've got to shift because if you dwell on that passed. It's not gonna take you to a good place we've got to kind of refocus and it did give more in a positive mindset and focus on. They honestly when you help other people that's one of the best things anytime you open somebody else you get away out of yourself yen to biggest and you feel better. We were talking about. The World War II. And how the the percentage of the population has served with much higher the other difference. Was that those guys coming home from the South Pacific are coming home from Europe. It took months for them to get home they didn't just get on a plane and up at Logan. Eight hours later it took months for them they were contained. On a ship decompress in together so by the time they got back to their family is they had a chance to process everything they had done. Where is now we're expecting our soldiers our Marines airmen. To get on a plane. And downed shift their lives back to a civilian mindset. In the time it takes to fly across the ocean. If so that's impossible. It's so quick in the transitions so abrupt in my first deployment my mom passed and so I got a Red Cross message to go for the funeral. And clearance and heavy fighting in pollution at the time and I question whether I can pull out. As the commander my boss made it easy game in order. I literally on the way to Baghdad. The airport we had ambushed on the way to the airport. I got there half hour after I got there I caught a plane to Germany had passed on on the plane woke up in Germany. Got on another plane passed out woke up and I was in the UJFK. Airport New York. And just a throng of people annoys the exposure. I mean was thrown me for a major major major loop. And and just being around all those people rolling into wake and funeral than three days later and back home I'm index had. Afghan Iraq. Really throws a number on your head yeah and so when you see and I was that you know middle aged guy. When you have these young folks that are eighteen years old. Then not fully formed they haven't got all those resiliency of life. They haven't had some of the challenges that you know make you'll strive to give you law armor and just life experience in general that will help you prepare for stuff like that. They're they're fresh out of a crate. And there at the tip of the spear. And so when they see some of those things and when we lose seventeen for Mexican incinerated some young kid has to pick up the remains a newspaper that he had. And how and then if there's nothing to transition on the way home as you pointed out in process that. The next thing you know you're looking for a job where you're you reconnect we neural high school buddies that you know have been shooting pool and playing baseball victim beer. Yeah their biggest their biggest Dresser is you know we're alienating my MC Friday right. And it's it it gives them a level of maturity that their peers don't have life experience no one else can understand. And there at home I remember on both of my trips overseas. And I always remind everybody I am I'm not I'm drawing a parallel to my experience I'm not saying that what I did is the same. But the transition for meat coming home from those places. One minute I'm in Afghanistan. At a very short layover in Bahrain. Passed out on the plane like you said woke up in London on a plane passed out woke up at Logan. Late on a Sunday. And Monday morning back on the air I was back here in the studio in a meeting talking about T shirt designs and. And next thing you know I'm back on the air my brain is still on Kabul time. I still had dirt under my fingernails that I hadn't even gotten out yet. And I'm trying to figure oh. What the hell I'm even doing here are never mind that all of the guys I was with are still over there are so I'm. Worried about them because I was just with them yesterday. And everybody's like are you must be so happy your home. And and it was like. No oh. Can I get on complaining go back and likable that's crazy why would you wanna go back there. People just unless it you've donate even in the limited experience I have. With it it's hard to explain to someone that's never seen it smelled it and they are done that because. They think I remember awhile ago having a conversation with someone Hurt Locker came now. And it was somebody that worked in their record industry in LA and I had just come home from Iraq I think that the times has sometime after 2006. And I say don't see that movie did you like it and they said yeah and I thought I was completely unrealistic. And I simple you know when he meets unrealistic and they said no one would volunteer. To go back. And I just laughed and I sent to you know anyone in the military. They would all go back tomorrow. And they relate to release someone would have a job like that and volunteered to go back into again. I sit you do realize our entire military is volunteer right that they all volunteer. Every time they do that. And it was really interesting having that I'll never forget that conversation because. That conversation really showed me how much of the disconnect there really is for people that just are not affected. By a the military. And their deployments and the wars we've been fighting because there are so many people just don't have any idea he's just know when their fans. But dictated some of the things they don't they completely misses the bond via and so few with a group of folks. In this below within the family knew families at risk and I've I've talked to a number of wounded warriors at Walter Reed one particular green marais. A quarter of his skull was missing he couldn't see some of this thing hasn't gone. And he was he you know what can we do what we do to help you and he said how do you get me back over there with Ian yeah. And united have the hardest choking up talking on stand. Will will work on that but let's work on getting ahead back in your hands back in your vision back and normal baby steps. Seven months later he was music. You won a trophy and a rifle competition it'll be learned to shoot the other way and that drive was to get him back overseas. And many of the same guys will slowly in gals playing the same thing. It's not they were these Summers they wanted to fight it's they're guys that there and they got to get back with those guys some of them gave glued to the mission. You know they they're the tip of the spear they see those kids that they're protecting and saving their lives and they know what happened there between them in the wolf. On day our protects them and of the sheep dog in the wolf in the sheep. Then the sheep dog and they know folks that they cared about they met they connected with. You know or in trouble and so it's a it's a real split when your over the U wanna be home on when your home a lot of guys wanna be back over there. Panel and a lot of I think civilians especially. When we get affected at home I sings like a marathon bombing. On. That they did their mission is all so well if we keep fighting over there. Ilk I am protecting. The ones that I love and the community in the country as a whole. Because if I can go over there and fight on their terms. Hopefully. They won't come home and fight on ours and I think a lot of Americans kind of missed that part of the mission as well. Welcome it because we have no basis to even understand war in this country. The last time we had a for an enemy was 200 years ago that really was on this ground and 1812 trying to take over country. Since then it and they've been a wage games and since World War II 75 years ago on. The war is basically a theoretical discussion on whether or not we should participate and and then there's an argument on why we should we shouldn't other places it's forced upon you and if you don't fight they'll kill you writes that it's that simplistic. And so if it's if it's a theoretical conceptual discussion on the that the benefits and the values and whether or not we should or shouldn't. You can be pretty. Detached from it. And when you but when you're over there and you look evil and the guy you look into the eyes of the Taliban and al-Qaeda guys are fundamentalists that says. I wanna kill you and everyone that looks like Q and you know they mean it. You don't want them coming in my kids my friends my family and I am on the travel halfway around the world to find them killed them and locked them up so that they can't. And you don't want to have visited upon our people. I had this conversation the last episode with the plastic surgeon. When your cop you go to a party everybody wants to talk about speeding ticket when your deejay at a radio station and you're at a party everybody wants to talk about rock stars. Is that possible for you go to a party when people know what you do. And not end up in a big theoretical. Theological conversation about global terrorism because that's your your background is in it's what everyone's talking about right now. Yeah hated each issue it its ships from that or or to the mental health injuries. Because. You know it is it's something it does not a lot of military presence there. In New England especially rank and again half of 1% and overseas. And so the American people of good people at heart and that's why we get the support we do. It's just that there's no impetus for them to get connected to it and so when they do meet somebody they are genuinely interested they do wanna help our veterans. And then the second piece they don't want their kids ago. Right and avoid having their right mind would want tickets to go be in combat but. If nobody goes then the trouble comes here rain and so thank god we've we've got young men and women and are willing to step up and volunteer and as you pointed out. You know it's all volunteers this is the first time we fought to protect protracted war when all volunteers since the American revolution. In win now on a second generation. Human 1819 year old paratrooper marine that's currently in Iraq or Afghanistan. There was three is all the war started. And because military service can be a family and business. It parents probably were in. So they could have spent their childhood. Would mom or dad or mom and dad going to war and coming home going to war criminal for their entire childhood now live there. And I've got plenty of friends now whose kids and now and in the white knuckle in the kids deployments over the place like Iraq and Afghanistan. So he said we we have we have no idea the impact on these military families because recycling. Small group of people to fight them on. And you know at some point you gotta question whether or not that's the best thing for the country I know we can do it we've proved we can. I'm but when you detach and you create a military class within society. It's not the best thing for society sometimes. I have a lot of civilians that come to me and say I wanna help our veterans. When I don't know where to go to do that. Can you recommend some organizations that I can support because I want to do my part as a civilian I I wanna be engaged cynically. And one of the organizations I always recommend is home based program and what you were just talking about is part of the reason for that. Is that your mission statement isn't just to service the veteran. But you serviced the family around the veteran as well which. Is not the same with a lot of other organizations. And I'm not saying that what they're doing isn't great because our our veterans need help. But the fact that there's a recognition. Of the service of the family. Behind the service of the active duty military or or veteran personnel. Is a huge. Recognition and on just how taxing. War is for their loved ones as well. And they and they be the first ones to say I had the easy being deployed my wife my kids my husband they are the ones with the tough job. And the fact that home base recognizes that and services those people as well is huge. Was she is you know as the military's. Person he had I've been in a military family and you know it was a military spouse for a good while it's hard and really hard and I can tell you you know my wife and kids. Back in 2002 or three I left for six months on deployment they got extended to a year and manic and extended to eighteen months. And it went from Afghanistan over in Iraq and envision. That's not a normal lifestyle for somebody have to live with and if you if you saw the movie we were soldiers once and young knees. The terrible situation where cab drivers who dropping off death notices. You know that that the military casualty notification system is pretty precise as a knock at the door someone shows up. India told the worst news you could possibly have and having having administered that news I can tell you would worst job you can have to have. My wife used to spend. It up at 3 in the morning every day when I was in Iraq on line to see if I was dead. I share all the shades pulled lights out because. She knew the protocol the time was way to the first like goes on in the house before you knock on the door. And she wanted to get her stuff together it herself together so that she didn't fall apart in front of the kids but imagine doing that every day for a year and a half. And when things get really Dicey there on the ground war during the invasion. Everywhere was seems to be a place that there was a lot of bad things on on. And despite my best efforts to tell that nothing was going on them the news would rat me out and tell them otherwise which would make things worse and win when we when we sustain those terrible bombings in Boston a few years ago everybody remembers it in new anybody around Boston and they couldn't reach them. How out paralyzing the terrible full of fear you worry that you lost somebody and there was nothing you can do that helplessness on the well that's Monday for military family during the height of the war in Iraq. You get into you know to be something over the news that there was we lost eight guys and I'm in an idea attack. So a 150000. Families across the country are all holding their breath waiting to find out there this son daughter husband is that. Mixing you know it's Baghdad's what tightens up a little bit now of people outside of Baghdad three little easier people in Baghdad. Just tightening up. Yeah and you find out what branch. And you you know that the information comes slowly meanwhile somebody knows that they're gonna get in even when you find out it's not your loved one you're not happy you just relieved. And they feel guilty the relieve because somebody else is gonna get bad news today just like you thought you gonna yet. And then it's Tuesday and it's same thing again. It's that's 365. Days of white knuckle and that experience in the military families. Have taken a really rough beating over this past eighteen months it's unprecedented we have no idea the impact as it's ever measured. We have no idea what the suicide rate is amongst military spouses because then not register with the VA did not register with the DOD. We know we lose 22 veterans day because there accounted for in some way. We have no idea and the families. And so we do know now we have gold star families are home base is not creating any programs specifically for gold star spouses. Who obviously lost a husband either suicide or combat. And we're working with them too with to a brand new intensive program that when a pilot the summer just because they have nowhere to turn. And and who could. Understand other than someone else that's that's just like they are. Well who else could possibly support. On or be able to you then. Empathize. With a loss like that after a prolonged service. Of years and years and years at war than than to have a group of people that know unfortunately exactly how you feel. In and that's that the challenge we have is what we're filling a void at home base. You know the VA has a monumental task. And it you know there there some incredible people working the VA in this and terrible people who worked the VA. In the terrible people thoroughly embarrassed the ones that are out there trying to be job everyday. But until. You know everything's perfect this gaps. And that's home base his job in since his creation you know Boston Red Sox and MGH stepping up to put this program together. Have done a phenomenal job. On it's given us the ability to create a national center of excellence or Boston. As for my money is the best place in America if somebody go that needs this type of care. I'll in we've built programs from complex clinical the fitness and nutrition all to meet the veterans where they needed. That's an Henry mind body medicine for stress reduction anxiety reduction each of these programs is a different. Opportunity another tool in the tool box of that week tale of the care that somebody needs because no one's combat experience is all as is identical to someone else's. In this so many variations of it. If you try and cookie cutter and used one approach to solve everybody's problem is it's kind of like trying to do rehab on and the or shall. You know that they're kind of the same. Cannot write in his act if you don't use different techniques in Iraq and against the desired results on the other part is. By it by raising the money through. As a nonprofit Philanthropic effort. On win not beholden to the government. We don't have to follow any of their rules and they're bureaucratic impediments like treating families. Like on having him families help bring somebody inning collude with us to get a veteran in that needs some help on. And we can be as innovative as you can be and really let the private sector and you know incredible clinicians at Mass. General. Design things that don't exist. And really try something doesn't work out we'll fix. For anybody that doesn't know where where this program came from the home based program the Red Sox break the curse of the bambino. They win the World Series everybody remembers where they where it was amazing no one was sober. They take the trophy. And they take on this whirlwind tour and you know they took it all of the normal media outlet plates are gonna take it to them tonight show I'm gonna go here winning there. But the team took the trophy to Walter Reed. To go and visit our wounded warriors. And they were supposed to stay what two hours I think the story is this mostly want our. And they stayed all day. Went to the White House that went to Walter Reed they they fell in love with the troops they were looking to build their own. Philanthropic effort here from Boston and mrs. you know John Henry. Larry Lucchino and principally Tom Warner Tom Warner his dad was in Normandy fob Normandy I'm and he said this is that veterans. And they met with Ted Kennedy they asked him what area needed the most help and they said the invisible wounds posttraumatic stress traumatic brain injuries. And the best folks to work with a Mass. General they met with doctor Slavin from Mass. General the president. He went to the trustees and told him be the worst business decision they can ever make it would lose money. They would never make them nickel but it was the right thing to do in the hospital voted unanimously the trustees to do it. I'm in this beautiful partnership was created in 2009. They open the doors it was a regional clinic. I'm that it became. A much larger outpatient clinic and now it's a national center of excellence on and we're about to. Moving to a new facility next year and Charles Tom. Where we'll actually have will be able to triple the size of our program we now see folks small cross country. I just in the last 1011 months. We've seen veterans from forty states across the country with some of our most injured wounded warriors in the country. And given them hope for a life and really transform their lives and you've met some of the guys that have come through the program it's like changing. We have folks have lost all hope and they're getting ready to take their life and transform them and given them hope and now they're doing extremely well. And so my my goals always think we you know when I'm on the air like this. Is if anyone did you know connect with people let him know if you know veteran has been home for more than a few months and then not back to themselves. In become cius we we have a program that will help them and deal with these invisible. A lot of time the veteran will be afraid of being rubber stamped crazy. Of a stigma attached to it. And they're also afraid because so many of them work in. Security. Law enforcement. And they're afraid that if I admit that I might need some help. Not only. Am I gonna face a social repercussion. But I'm afraid to jeopardize how I pay my mortgage and how IT Karen my family. And the ability for the home based program to work outside of government agencies. For. A family member to be able to say listen you know I I'm the one home with my husband or husband say on the one home with my wife every day. I was with them before they were deployed I've been with them since they got home I definitely recognize the need a change in their behavior. And for them to be able to go and get treatment in SE. And ride that way. Getting that message across that it is I trusting plays where they can go and not be rubber stamped crazy. Not be just handed a bunch a pills and say. You'll be fine because unfortunately I think. There was a certain amount of that that was happening after the war started and people have those fears in their legitimate years. So we we are a real 100% hip a compliant. You would take a judge. A court order to get a copy your records anybody. If somebody called we were leaving and knowledge to me wouldn't you know if somebody said hey is you is the patient is in their propose it he would say yeah we when he was say he's a patient. We have folks that actually will you know somehow don't tell the newspaper it's okay. I'm and we stood still the answer is the same we don't you talking about we don't acknowledge all of us on the patient enough because as bribes if they tell you they are listen to them fuel up but it. We won't talk about it because. All ages as you pointed out one of the things military folks walk out as with a secret Clarence most cases or background check or a top secret clearance and they don't want compromise that. And it's one of the it was one of their advantages in the private sector when they make that transition and they don't wanna be stamp crazy and and the reality is. Posttraumatic stress is basically a body's normal reaction to being placed in an abnormal situation. I'd be more worried about somebody they can shot at somebody tried to kill them or they had had issues somebody and they weren't affected in anyway. Yet you're not crazy million you very much normal right somebody that doesn't get affected by killing people scala sociopath. And if you don't get affected by telling people and I say that affected meaning it doesn't volume and anyway. You know every soldier I know that's taken a life it it autism they try and calibrated and reminded. That's a Baghdad it was doing bad things and justified and that's how you get through it but no matter what. You still effective rent and then as to what degree in if it's an accidental fratricide where a young kid gets killed during a firefight. We owned one and we feel. I'm we don't walk away from that mean despite what anyone might think you feel extremely bad you feel horrible bottom because. Those little kids they're US soldiers will step between little kids in the bad guys who are willing to shoot their own little kids will get between that. Before we let alone can get killed. On the kids and dogs and we would we've we've you know the people that part of the world but some of the things we do to protect dogs amaze those are. Some of the things that bothered me the most in my trips overseas and you and I spent the day up in the mountains in Afghanistan together. And a little kids and the animals. Are still. What I remember the most ands. The guys that always say you know you can tell you that you were home not too long ago because. It's it's on your face how much your affected. Unfortunately when you've been deployed. For a month upon month on month it's almost you don't get you don't become OK with it. But you develop a catalyst to it because you have to be able to function every day. And that calluses they are when you get home. And it's there to protect you. When you get home. You don't needed anymore and getting rid of this whole art in in open an amount up an impact in that luggage. And aired an Arnold that is a good thing because you let that oh you've talked it through with somebody. You normalize it you you know they can explain the union and not a bad person you do what you you know you fall in the rules to do was right protecting people. They did with the clinicians can really help you unlock those those clinical countess the other thing we trying to do. Is we also trying to prepare you mechanically to deal with life. We have to give you certain life skills so that when you're stretcher stock going up how do you manage arose. I'm some folks have a lot of trouble going in the crowds why because crowds about overseas. You're in a crowd somebody can shoot you somebody to drop grenades is also some bad things we have to kind of re work your brain to process that crowds can be okay. Trains can be okay. Traffic is terrible whenever whenever end you're on the move and Afghanistan Iraq the worst thing you wanna do is be stopped the injured now vulnerable in your target. So when guys get stock in bumper to bumper traffic it's not good for them they stopped feeling it and they start getting. Tighten the chest and indeed you know and a bad bad place so we have to work on them so they can bring it back down that your arm Boston. It's not too bad. But didn't help us was the Boston. Is weak Wi fi users tell people you know you can't treat Boston like Afghanistan he can treat it like Iraq. But Iraq and Afghanistan came here ranked and so part of a necessity I told. And so it become it gives you challenges but. Frankly that Bennett pixel won't work because. It doesn't happen everyday in not on high alert all the time you can't and it's like run on a cart 6000 rpm you can't do it every day blown engine. We have to teach you how to what the but the rpm to go down and settled down into the 2003000. One of the best descriptions wanna guys never gave me. We were at the mall. And it was around Christmas time says pack. And it's. I could tell that just being there was bothering him. And it's. Not having been in the military said will talk to me about what is going through your head right now like stream of consciousness. Tell me what it is that you're thinking. And I think this really important for anybody that that's never been in the military. Because just imagine yourself at the mall whenever Molly go to Christmas time. Now this person is a trained to protector there in the military near train protector. They are now. Looking at. Who would I see if if something happened right now I am surrounded by innocent women and children. I am analyzing every bag. That every single person is carrying. Trying to recognize something out of the ordinary. I'm noticing every single person on a cellphone. Because selloff in these things are triggered by cellphone use. They're scanning this crowd at Christmas at the mall for anyone that looks like they might be acting. Unlike everyone else. They're looking for what could I use in a weapon as a weapon in an emergency if something were to happen right now and I needed to arm myself. They're looking for emergency exits they're looking for where I was going to get. Because I was with them so they're like it's my job to protect you first so where am I gonna put used so that I can go and do what I have to do. This what's going through their head. Walking through the mall Christmas. While. I tonight on Monday sourcing and songs and their Santa and there's music and people are waiting for Pratt soul and there's a line at the AT and that's your thinking about as a civility. How fortunate for you. That that's your biggest worry. Meanwhile you're surrounded by people that have been trained that this scenario and we're seeing all around the world right now the Arianna grind day concert and you know walking over a bridge in the middle of London and that. Again it's not a crazy response to these people are having it is an absolutely rational response to being in the middle of a mall. Surrounded by soft targets at Christmas. So you see the things that happen in London and Paris. Those every day occurrence is overseas right. They're very sporadic and high profile here but having lived through those experiences. You watch for the same things because they are real the boogie man Israel. And they will do bad things and it won't matter that it's a bunch of young girls go on and Ariana Grande a concert. They're perfect target for them to us that would you it's it's unimaginable somebody would try and target that group as of that group of people. As it is an actual target of just you know murder like that. I'm you know we all think they're gonna try to block the Pentagon and the gonna chimed low this army base or something that represents the military. They go for the soft underbelly they go for big go for the what's gonna bother our morals the most and that's and that's when they shoot for and frankly. That's the challenge that our folks have to deal with them. I think again is he more and more as you do in places like Israel. That's in that is in new normal I think European you're gonna see more of that because. There are a lot more exposed. On this a lot more potential trouble that can happen much quicker there we still have some protection mark two oceans and our lifestyle and our. You know we we are melting pot so. And really only having to borders land borders to secure as opposed to some countries that are bordering six different nations with six completely different. Governments and ideologies. And it's it's almost impossible. So when we come home to some degree we are home. And that is as you see these things in the news or reminds you of that and frankly. On it doesn't help in the transition to the amendment and that's why it's important. You know when we have opportunities to wrap our arms around these guys and gals when they come home. That's why we do those events like we do at Fenway that's you know the admission gratitude galas we do. Any time we do stuff like that it's to pull folks together. On whether it's a ski trip to loan we bring a hundred vets out there was an amount watch to sit. While we have some great supporters up there though host us up there what do we do those is to bring people together and kind of just reconnect them and let him know that the community care as we got yeah. And then on the and the elements when we need clinical and dimensions it's great to have mass general hospital which is one of the best hospitals in the world. Embrace these guys and and leveraged the best resources available the country to assist them. So one of the challenges with a brain injury and mental health injuries is in and doctor Jerry Rosen bomb as the chair master general's department psychiatry the largest and best in the country. He'll tell you that when it comes to those type injuries we operate at an AM radio level of medicine in a digital medical world. And so great analogy actually it really is this that most of the stuff that was created pharmaceuticals with the technology was created fifty years ago. Other things that kind of been repurchased. That we look at stuff like infrared light. To help with posttraumatic stress in these sort of things that are being developed in places. For traumatic brain injury same thing. There's also it's of ideas people have but one of the things that we found is using what's out there right now. We developed this fourteen day program where we can compress a year of therapy in the two weeks. And the intensity of that it just makes such common sense are you an example. If you had to do recovery from a knee injury. And you went once a week for an hour or fifteen weeks. You gonna move the needle slowly. But if you had the best sports trainer from the patriots working with you from sunup to sundown at two weeks straight. You'd think you'd get at a faster. And you had all the best equipment everything else out of those guys get back on the field so quickly after surgery and so. By having. You by having the ability to have a veteran. From sunup to sundown for fourteen days straight. You're able to move the needle significantly because you've got them and you know it is thinking else get a mental help appointment. You wouldn't go to all fifteen appointments of fifteen weeks these number one at today's pay every time ago. You know for young guy or gal this working. The second part is you don't wanna admit you have a mental health injury and you're gonna take a 27 reasons not to go that day and Livan where you live. Also and you get up and you heard traffic was all bumper to bumper coming in to Boston it was raining insane. I'm I can't make that. Now it's two weeks he got a gap. The war we've got them. There you only get all of those individual therapy appointments were able to build 50000 group. With nine other folks that this year and now another combat veterans are sharing this experience with. We work with the months and fitness nutrition stuff mind body medicine stuff and then we try Thai chi yoga. You name it all these on. Complementary alternative medicines that girl there. And we we packages altogether. During a fourteen day period. Where we're getting like and 90% fixed on somebody just two weeks. We'll sit worth thinking of committed suicide are are not any more than out thinking about what life can offer them. And so. And I think that that this model would developing that we now replicated three other sites in the country UCLA Emory university and a and Russian Chicago. We now force sites have been doing this all with a great deal of academic rigor with them. So that if we improve this and we've got scientific data to prove that this is significantly better than that normal traditional once two weeks in a psychiatrist psychologist. I'm. We know approving an over the next few years are gonna stop publishing that we're setting these was setting the stand is to create a new model of care. That doesn't exist right now in the country. And then we'll open folks like the VA with much greater resources will adopt that and other academics and as well embrace it. I'm so I think that's a huge huge huge piece. You're in this point right now where you are in the approving stages still. And so for somebody listening that. Not affected by the wars at all doesn't have a veteran in the family. But as patriotic American and a proud American that appreciates the safety and security that they have to be able to raise their family go to work everyday. They're like OK I've been listening to you guys. This sounds amazing. It's not something I never gonna need or anyone in my family is ever gonna need. But I want get involved in some way I wanna help in some way. There's a bunch of different ways that keep looking get involved with home base that the volunteer. They could take part in the events like Iran to home base which is going to be in July at Fenway Park which if you've not. To be able to it to do this race through the mill downtown Boston. Two runs through the green monster and around the warning track and cross home plate. As a Red Sox fan is amazing. And to do with thousands of people for a common goal is pretty powerful. So we we you you spoke about the run that that that's one of our one of the largest healing events in the city and what's beautiful about it is. You're able to not only run in the event if you want and we've now got a five K run. And ninety runner five K walks of pick your poison Allman great. I'm UB running alongside the may be an amputee that's doing the same thing you may be running alongside a mother who lost a son. And think of how you can help somebody just by showing up. They can't run support somebody that is running come to the park that day we have the trophies on display yet to walk on the park is one of the most healing eventually get ever come to. I'm in this year we we've kind of taken in new twists and we're gonna honor our Vietnam vets who didn't get welcome home we were treated terrible. On when they return home. And if you look at the basic things that factor into somebody's experience overseas and other impacted at home. You know we look at the couple variables what was childhood like what was a combat service like it was a transition home like. Well anonymous can help their childhood that that guy's been cast there 181920. If they go overseas and have a terrible combat experience we can't control that the enemy and has a voice on the one. The last piece though it transition home we can affect that by how we welcome people on how we take care Mormon here. And if you can take the time to come to Fenway Park on July 15 and just chair mono welcome home is sending a huge message beyond just banking among a marked by the airport. If you can contribute to it and help support financially what we're doing. I'd also say you may be helping yourself because if there's another Boston bombing you're gonna need the help from the skills that we learned these veterans to help you later. If you have a traumatic brain injury and a football field or soccer field or car you're gonna want the skills that we're building in the science were creating. But the content concussions effective roadside bomb. On so you might be helping yourself eventually. But this event is special. I'm Emily you know welcoming home these veterans from Vietnam that really got a lousy treatment we'll have 300 at least show up for this one event. On and that afternoon at the Red Sox yankees game we're gonna have a thousand veterans from Vietnam march on the field. And welcome them home Boston style. At the game at the game the pregame ceremony. You're gonna see 1000 Vietnam vets get marched through the center field gate during the pregame ceremony. You gonna see the flag dropped begin CF fifteens flying over. In the forest welcome home and thank you if those can heal those wounds in oh how great today is that. It. Really is hard to describe what a powerful day that is one of the things I look forward to the most. Is you always get everybody along the third base line up in the grandstands. And there's always speakers in the Red Sox have people there and and Mass. General has people there you guys are always there. What you always have someone that was helped by home base tell their story. About their military service about their experience oversees about what it was lake and the hard times they had once they came home. And then they always talk about. There experience at home base and how they've been profoundly changed by it. There is never a dry guy in the grandstand. Every year when they speak. It in the you can imagine. With someone that was considering taking their life and how they've got it back think of all the second and third order effects that kids and wife their parents everybody that would have been adversely affected. And I know we can do that and help them is something that makes our clinicians get up every day in the you know. Eager eager eager to go to work because we we always Tom you treat family. This is our family and you get him you know now we've introduced you now they're part of our family you get to help our family. And when you help your family obviously. You know you're vested and at the event at that Fenway Park in July 15. It's healing event you'll see so many people that have been hurt in different ways when they lost a child into combat whether they lost a husband or wife to combat. I'm well they lost somebody when they came home. In this still suffering. Having a group of folks Kamal field and tell you you know thank you thank you who you did were with you you know give you a hug. All those things in you know at the finish line were were shaken hands and hug and sweaty bodies a whole time. I know I I've grabbed a few times when he I apologize that we all do I know I smell good when I've finished around world dripping wet and it's usually it's like the hottest day of the year last year wasn't like ninety degree useless it was beautiful. As far as the weather goes if viewers spectator in the shade yeah. But that it starts right on ya. You weigh which is always awesome. And to run over the mass at bridge and memorial drive is closed which city of Boston we apologize for it you know the detours that morning. But just someone that grew up around the city to just run across the mass at bridge up and down memorial drive along the river it's sound. It's one of the best feelings because you'll see so many people from the city out there agency. I'll all the police are on the side of the road a member that I first when I ran actually ran a a shadow Iran and Afghanistan. For the run home base the Sox went over and home base and overall the shorts for us we ran an. Crushed stone which I would recommend that yeah right now not that I came back and ended the first one and it was three weeks after the Boston bombing. We are pretty nervous because. We were 30% of our funding came from now one day and that's with a funds go to phone pay for the care with the doctors. And the city said they weren't sure there will allow us to do it because they hadn't cut the bad guys yet. Well actually they caught them and they told us we can do it but I remember watching this guy who had it was a right leg amputee that was running the race. And every first responder he saw. He would run past me negotiate their hands and thank them with they'd. And that was I mean talk about moving here and I'd start up that game and I've got some injuries from 31 years in the service back in the seasonal stuff I just feel at that day. But every time I saw him run I said you know what I'm not really hurts in Mosul humiliating and demoralizing to me is he passed me with one leg at. Because he would run past me to go thank somebody and then I'd make up some ground and. Yeah I had three miles longer than all he had to still be glass half. And but but watching him do that and watch in their faces they with thanked by a wounded warrior for what they did it really connects the city and that's what pot makes Boston special. And that's why you know you can't replicate sometimes what goes on here it's a it's a big enough city where it's a pretty cool city and its smaller we know each other. And we come out for each other and if the more folks we can get out. I would tell you if you have a Little League Baseball team bring those kids to the park that they it's free you're always looking something to do the trophies are there hello all there. There there's all kinds of other stuff all along the concourse. And it's it's really wanna the only chance you gonna get to be able actually walk around the park and have that kind of access you have complete access to the park. And you know you get a teaching kids about citizenship to more people sacrifice for. And I Cyrus tell folks you know soccer team in baseball team anything bring the kids there for the day it's free. It's at Fenway Park and it's a great great experience that live music there's also it's a fun stuff going on it's a great family day. And so if you can't run support it to show up. And and show people you care and it means a great deal. You were talking about. You know a wounded warriors banking the first responders. And how it is you know PT SD research. Could help someone with a sports injury the same thing happened after the marathon bombing. The the level of research. And engineering that has gone into the price static for our wounded warriors since nine elevenths. Those wounded warriors were the first ones visiting the victims of America on bombing. In the hospital. And some of those civilians. Victims ended up at Walter Reed because there were no civilian clinicians that new more. About prosthetics and the military doctors because they vary the forefront experts of it now. I've got two really good friends and I've made it home based patent just bounce that you were firm to them. They they did the best place to get the care for their prosthetics and their reputations was Walter Reed. I'm pat just is still there on this you know. A lot of folks see that the aftermath of the marathon and they make movies and everything else is kind of like all right everyone's got all the knocked it every day's a tough day. Nearly every day's a challenge you're life is you know could dramatically altered. There mobility however because of that that the science and technology associated with these the new prosthetic is huge. On the mental injuries is still there are obvious think of what it's like your whole life for shattered he had limbs torn from your body. On and you talk to folks that are amputees. Many more safe if you know the percent exit rate you know but there's no respect for your brain. And so that that's one of the reasons they come back to home base and they work well that's because they know that's a huge part and as you know Spaulding rehab which is one of the best rehab. So it's a country that's for our traumatic brain injuries nested in all the entities ended up there and just as you said they reached out to the folks Walter Reed and asked them to come up. On the folks in the Boston bombing I know reached out to London. When they had a bombing in Manchester. And they offered to go over and return the favor painful one and so it it does touch everybody. And sadly you know the stuff this can affect this movement forward. That the lesson we learn are really do hope everybody. While it's really powerful the work that you guys do you know I've been a believer and a and you know have been so passion in my support of home based for years. It it just had to be. You know accused matter whatever word you want to describe it that you and I would be in Afghanistan and then come back in and out you know with the connection at home base as well and I love making all my friends and family cannot cheer me on and they always say the same thing at the end of it there what do creek today. When I'm so glad I came it was so costs. So whether you wanna run it whether you wanna walk it where the just one account you can support you can donate. Two peoples runs and make a donation that way you guys are always accepting donations on sci aid and and if you don't have the money to donate just like you said just come out to support the event for the day bring the kids. The third baseball uniforms on and get a bunch of great pictures at Fenway Park that day it it really is awesome it's July 15. People can go to I don't know missed out org yap and all of the details are up there as well and well I'll be out there. In the next few weeks the Red Sox and put up some signs are on the city on the texting give to this event between that and Vietnam veteran event. We have a text to give. Nine we're gonna put up you're going to be putting up on billboards are on the city. Yet ten bucks for ten bucks and you know. Anything's great winning you know not every has a million dollars and and ten bucks what you can afford we appreciate ten bucks just as much as a million balls from somebody that has on him handles. We know it if it comes from the heart that's way happy about. In a single vote is saying a minute ago. And you know you just look at opportunities should I issue and I think his men all that I remember somebody coming in in my office saying they we get a DJ wants. Rock and I smiled and they should her name is mr. scary how Corey isn't because I knew about you from Boston a half and I said what's she gonna do. And they said she's coming over as a reporter. An embedded reporter and guys that you know what that's great she wants to do her show live. And I'm so glad and they made the decision is say yes this is a great idea and it was from beginning. It was for all the right reasons and it also reminded me that you darted down that Iraq and that was your second appointment and we very much appreciated the fact that you're willing to do that twice. And then. They really pay for it I know you get calls in the middle and I from friends that need help. We always appreciate that and especially when you're affirmed or programs that we can help muzzle law. Well it's it's one of those things it's it's hard to describe. And being a civilian being welcomed into. A tribe like. The military. Especially at deployment. Being female reporter not exactly the easiest sell for you guys are now. You know you were talking earlier about the stress of you with the family goes through when they hear that there's an incident overseas. And I'm always trying to explain to. Civilians that I meet kind of the powerful connection that you make overseas. And so I don't know any of you that's only knew a few of the guys that I met in Iraq that just happen to be in Afghanistan when I got there. And I had been there may be a week or so when the embassy was attacked. And we had been out that day on the road had come back to camp Phoenix. We found out about the attack on the embassy and a bunch of the guys that I was with that I was embedded with every day we're going. And I don't even know if ever told you this story by I have sat phones which is how I was able to call the radio station time. And so I can call home and I you know would give it the guys and say listen it's hard for you to have a private conversation with your wife take the phone. They'll use it it's 399 minute but the radio station paid ports or whatever going at music. And when those guys found out that OK we're going into this firefight everybody knew that the embassy was under attack what was going on. One of the guys came up to me. Granted I just met him a week ago. And him and his wife had the conversation about. If something happens to you they're gonna come and knock on the door to support your wife was saying that you wait for the light come on the morning and the casualty officers outside. And he came up music Carrey can nineteen touchy from minute and I said yeah you know what's up. And he said down. Can I see your sat phone and I was like of course when he can use it whenever I thought he wanted to call and his wife for whatever. He put his wife's name and phone number in the phone. And he said I want you to do something for me and I said what and he says if something happens to me over there. I need you call my wife and warned her that they're coming to the house. And when you go to becoming a better reporter they give you all the rules on what you're allowed to do a much are not allowed to do and all that stuff and I said honey I am not allowed to do. I I would get in trouble if I tip your wife off that something happened to you and warned her before the military could get their properly notify her. Annie looked at me and he said. Cary. I'm asking you because I promised my wife that she would never get woken up by those guys banging on the door. I'm asking you if something happens to me would you do that spur me. A week ago. I was in that studio it WA asked in Boston and I didn't know this guy in in a week. Now he I is asking me to do something. How do you explain a bond like. How do you describe to someone what that's like because that same guy. And how was I supposed to say no Beck I would take a bullet from me as soon as we rolled off that basically got into a fight eight. Ends to protect me how supposed to say no that guy that's what you do he's asking me to do that Foreman I was like okay. I'm gonna get in trouble. But I'll do it because US retail and all the other guys really don't worry do will make sure she doesn't. Moved picture she didn't have what it did it happen that quick and that's how quickly the bong hits though. Yeah and then it just gets stronger and stronger and stronger yeah so. And which is why to this day. I get those phone calls in the middle of the night which is why to this day. You know those guys still you know you wonder why you see those old World War II guys wherein their hat. From the ship they wore on in World War II where the battle they were in their branch that you you look at those guys and wonder why a that experience that six months that deployment still defines who they far and it's because it's that powerful of an experience. And it changed me changed the kind of person I am. I was only there for a few weeks at a time. Imagine how profoundly changed you would be. After a year. That's one deployment. After three years that's three deployments and the bond that you make with these guys that you're training with every weekend. Or every day an active duty deploy with you go through all of the stuff. That tribe that that community that sense of self. There isn't a bar and I you know I would just awful lot of military spouses but. It rivals a marriage in a sibling it it it it is almost more powerful in some ways. And it's hard to describe somebody that's never. Experience something like that. He's got you military family knew and we family. And you know a lot of times we look at it is my my military families in danger right now. So that's the priority yeah. You know I mean when I'm home trying to cute and we family what you if you got military family members risk. They do come in the in my opinion you do think about it and I and no you know being a sitting in my mother's funeral mice holders were fighting. And I could not. Relief function. Where it was back in America the five I was on five days and it may have as the Earl Thomas is you know that travel. But you you you you don't want guys here one eyes overseas and bad things happen on their cousins in the news right and so. Again when you're younger it's harder yeah I was older side handled more resiliency. And that's why sometimes these things can be a challenge but it that's why it takes all of us back here. Help wrap around these guys and gals to make him. Whole welcome them back in gear tried again and then I'll give her hand up and I have a charity that just asking for shot. In a because they're five years behind me of is as the defy is in the service. And their friends went to school they went to some job and they they learn more skills here trying to catch up. And they just want a shot at something so they can have a decent life. That's why it's important is wraparound drama welcome home home in and help make that transition. Because once they make it. The loyalty that they leave the show each other they show the community that wants a coach sports they're the ones that vote. They're the ones of volunteer in the community because it's the same DNA from a room here as it is there you want these guys in your neighbor what you want to work with. And it's a way for. You'd be involved in their trying to allow. You'll never meet a more gracious or more thankful person. For help and support and and just a simple thing cues and when you reach out to somebody that served in you say thank you it's. When they are so appreciative. You know it's genuine you know it's real it is really hard to explain. And that's why I wanted to talk about this at this event and this organization because. I just want people can't see it for themselves. Once you come out and see if yourself and you see how the organization functions you see an event like that. And you just see. The appreciation. And it's. It just on the faces it you'll go back every year I challenge you to go once and never go back. You know it is you may not serve for a lot of reasons. You know that's it the Milton what everybody yeah you can go be a part of that culture right benefit from it and you can benefit from the experience and be a part of it. Just disease in and guess what they'll welcome him you know it's not like this and why you're here you are with us pray they want they they wanna it's a big pool of one average open rank. It is PT EST awareness month this month but it's a mission in a message that needs to get out every month. But especially this month when it's got everybody talking about everything that's going on it's really important. To support and organization like this an event like that. July 15 at Fenway it's going to be awesome attending a great day. Common hang out with us we're gonna be there I'll be there really sweaty purple haired girl crush them. And making everybody hugged me. I you hear more details on the run to home base. Website and then for people into some more information about home base in general. Its home base dot org. Based on org are run home based or both of them you know you can connect back and forth to him but. If you know somebody needs our help military family member Expos. Veteran. We take care mall and it's all at no cost all the money we raise at this event goes to caring for wounded veterans. And their family members so I. From my perspective I can't think of a better way to spend the day is spent a few blocks. Well I really appreciate it taken so much time to come hang out let me alma new pod at like get a lot. Yeah you're you're cutting edge here I know this is it's so I got to remind everybody. If you're checking up podcast you can subscribe it's on iTunes who plays stitcher. Comments being nice to us but comment. Get the word out about the podcast because the more people we can get on checkout the podcast and more. They can find out about great organizations like home base and more events like around to home base. And thank you guys from listening never know what's gonna be on episode six it's a rat. Neither the benefit. Have a great day.
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