Today's American Veteran is presented by the Coalition to Salute America's Heroes The show is hosted by Emmy nominated actor and Patriot Jack Scalia.
The Coalition supports all Veterans and is a non partisan outreach.The views expressed by our guests are their own and may not reflect those of The Coalition to Salute America's Heroes
Jack talks with Ben and Chondra Brown
Brown served as an officer in Iraq, leading a platoon of soldiers, some of whom had been in the Army longer than he was alive. Brown deployed in 2004 and was in Iraq for 15 months straight--he led extremely tough missions that involved removing roadside bombs, enduring daily detonations on his vehicle and patrol. In one incident, he lost his driver after an IED exploded and his patrol came under a small arms fire ambush; in another he had to pull his squad leader out of a burning Bradley assault vehicle. His squad leader survived but he lost his leg.
After he got out of the military in 2010, Brown struggled with flashbacks and PTSD and at his lowest point was considering suicide. He credits his wife Chondra as being his “angel,” helping to pull him out of his darkest depths, building him back up and finding his “why” in his family. He has six children and is devoted to coaching his kids’ sports teams and volunteering at R. Roger Rowe, where he attended himself and his mother Barbara was a teacher for 37 years.
Now Ben and his wife run 9 Week Warrior , 9 Week Warrior is open to Everyone. There is no cost to Active Duty, Veterans, or 1st Responders. 20% of the proceeds from all purchases along with Donations go to sponsoring Active Duty, Veteran or 1st responder’s participation in 9 Week Warrior program.
SBP was founded in March 2006 by Zack Rosenburg and Liz McCartney after the couple (now married), who originally lived in Washington, D.C., volunteered in Louisiana’s St. Bernard Parish following Hurricane Katrina. The parish, located just outside of New Orleans, was rendered 100% uninhabitable by Katrina’s floodwaters. Seeing the inefficiency and unbearably slow progress of the institutional - or “traditional” rebuilding process, but inspired by the residents' collective spirit and fierce determination to rebuild, Zack and Liz launched an organization - originally called St. Bernard Project - to help them achieve their recovery goals.
With the tremendous support of donors, volunteers and corporate partners, that organization has grown from a three-person volunteer team into a national organization headquartered in New Orleans, and recognized as a leader in disaster resilience and recovery, with a mission to shrink the time between disaster and recovery.
On October 7th, 2001 just weeks after 9/11 our best and finest military men and women were deployed to defend our country under Operation Enduring Freedom.
The focus of Stride & Ride Relay’s is to honor, remember and raise awareness about the October 7th, 2001 deployment of our military men and women. Take time to remember those who paid the ultimate sacrifice, including those who lost their lives due to military PTSD and the Invisible Wounds of War and continue to support those currently serving, our veterans, first responders and never forget the the lives that perished on 9/11.
The idea for The Honor Group was founded by Mark “Coach” Soto, a retired high school football coach of 18 years. Mark has two sons that served in the military and he coached both of them in football. His youngest son after serving 9.5 years in the US Army as an Infantry Sniper, retired in 2015. His oldest son is an injured US Marine who medically retired in 2013 after 8.5 years of service.
Over their years of service, his two sons saw more than 31 months of combined combat deployments. As a result of the deployments, the family saw many military friends deploy and return changed. Many returned wounded, suffering from Post Traumatic Stress (PTS) or witnessed their military brother or sister killed in action. The service men and women were forever changed, as was their families.
In 2010, as requested, Coach Soto took over a fledgling football showcase in Northern California called Battle at the Capital that was struggling and losing support. As a father and football coach wrapped up in the emotional turmoil of his boys multiple deployments, Mark saw this football event as being the perfect venue to educate students, coaches and communities about the needs of our military veterans. Since 2010, the event has changed names, grown throughout California and has morphed into one of the best high school football showcases in the nation. The anchor event is now called: The Honor Bowl.
In December 2012, The Honor Group officially became a non-profit and launched other educational programs to help educate our youth and fund raise to assist injured, ill and wounded military veterans. Nationally respected, The Honor Group has goals to expand across America.
Gordon Brown is the founder of Team Veteran LLC, and the nonprofit Team Veteran Foundation, Inc., he served in the United States Navy during the Vietnam War 1972-1980. As a MM3 (E-4) he was qualified as the Chief Machinist’s Mate of the Watch (Top Watch) in the Aft Engine Room (AER) aboard the aircraft carrier USS Oriskany CVA/CV-34. As a MM2 he transferred to the carrier USS Ranger CV-61 as a Leading Petty Officer (LPO) and Top Watch for #3 Main Machinery Room.
He served in Guam in the mid 1970’s assigned to the USS Proteus AS-19 and worked with several government agencies to investigate and stop a major drug smuggling operation that was moving heroin from Thailand through the island of Guam bound for the Continental US aboard Pan Am Airways.
Sonoran Winds Hospice, provides palliative and hospice care specializing in providing care for veterans, law enforcement, fire fighters and first responders. Hospice and palliative care focus on the entire patient, clinical, emotional, psycho- social, and spiritual. Our patients often have unique issues that come from combat stress and/or PTSD issues. We go to extra lengths to make sure we honor these patients in ways that we know work, as we are veterans ourselves. We also employee title 38 agents to help apply for benefits and navigate the VA system to apply for available benefits at no cost to the veteran. We are a VA certified Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) and the owners are both veterans with combat deployments and one with a purple heart. We are currently expanding in areas like San Diego with large military populations, and partnering with foundations to
ensure we have the full scope of services for all veterans regardless of their country of service.
Lieutenant Colonel Orlowski’s 20-year Army career included assignments in the 1st Infantry Division in Vietnam, 5th Infantry Division (Mechanized), HQ United States Army Europe, HQ U.S. Continental Army Command and the Office of The Adjutant General of the Army. For his service in Vietnam, Colonel Orlowski was awarded the Purple Heart, Silver Star, Bronze Star for Valor with two Oak Leaf Clusters and Air Medal. His other awards include the Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal and Army Commendation Medal.
His public service includes co-founding Sailors Onboard 4 Soldiers, a non-profit corporation dedicated to teaching sailing to PTSD and other stress-related disorder sufferers. He is also the President and Chairman of the Board of the U.S. Army 1st Infantry Division Monuments Association. This non-profit organization oversees and, through an agreement with The American Battle Monuments Commission (Europe), pays for the annual maintenance of the 1st Division’s 11 WWI and WWII battle monuments in locations throughout Europe from Omaha Beach to Cheb in the Czech Republic.