Stories & Service

Veteran storytelling: The Strength to Keep Serving

The prevailing narrative on Veteran culture is incomplete. There are plenty of stories of tragedy – but those are just the first chapter of our story. The chapters that follow are stories of courage, growth, and most of all – love. The popular Veteran narrative also doesn’t tell the stories of the parents, spouses, and children of our Veterans. They served with us yet the voices of family members have mostly gone unheard. We need to hear their voices – for without the strength of the family, the Veteran is lost.

What follows are stories from The Strongest Generation — people united by their experiences in connection with America’s longest war. After the military, our mission to serve didn’t end. Transition to new our new missions – at work, at home, and in our communities, is most important chapter in story of the Strongest Generation. What follows are stories told directly by Veterans and family members. I thank them for having the courage to write and to you for reading with an open heart.


  • The Strongest Generation: Weight of the Bag

    January 18, 2020 by

    This morning I went up in the attic, looking for Autumn decorations in storage bins that are poorly labeled (organization has never been my strong suit).  As I opened one of the bins, I noticed a plastic trash bag inside, also not labeled.  I soon saw the box next to it containing “memorabilia” from my… Read more

  • Veteran Voices: Finding Peace In Our Longest War

    January 10, 2020 by

    The first person I knew killed by the war was Smith. He was my table commandant at West Point when I was a Yuk (sophomore). As the ranking Firstie (senior), he set the rules for how the table operated. He decided when we ate, how the food got served, and how much work the plebes… Read more

  • America's Longest War Phones Home

    December 29, 2019 by

    What does it mean, when war becomes home and home becomes war. On my first deployment, I remember standing in line with about 25 other people holding an AT&T calling card, waiting to use a phone in a big trailer filled with phones. The calling card was for 60 minutes but for some reason the… Read more

  • Who is the Strongest Generation?

    December 20, 2019 by

    Touched by America’s longest war… America’s strongest generation is all around you. They sit next to you at soccer practice, watching their kid or grandchild play. They take your order at a restaurant. They pray silently in church with everyone. They stand in line for groceries, mentally planning what final errand can be run before… Read more

  • Veteran Voices: Part 3 – Behind the Generator

    December 15, 2019 by

    So that’s how I’m going to die – It wasn’t so much of a question, nor a complete thought, it was more of a realization – that hit me like a train. Almost a decade ago, I stood in front of my boss, torn between the desperate desire to run and the inability to move.… Read more

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