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Veteran Cast

Author: Douglas Karr

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The mission of Veteran Cast is to educate, inform, and improve the lives of Veterans in our community.
21 Episodes
Joe Biggs is a combat veteran of the United States Army, twice awarded a Purple Heart while serving several tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan. Post-retirement, SSGT Biggs is a political investigative reporter who has a huge following online. This isn't an interview about politics, though. Joe has been transparent about his post-combat struggles with post traumatic stress disorder. Since the holidays are often a struggle, I asked Joe to share his story as well as his advice for other veterans, family members, and friends. Please take the time to listen and share this podcast. Special Guest: Joe Biggs.
In a previous episode ( about the Eleven Fifty Academy, we interviewed Marine Veteran John Qualls about the opportunities for Veterans in the technology industry. Since that time, the Eleven Fifty Academy has historically acquired approval from the federal government for GI Bill usage. We returned to the Eleven Fifty Academy to speak to David Whitt, the first GI Bill graduate of the Eleven Fifty Academy, and Shawn Gardner, Eleven Fifty's Executive Vice President of Business Development about turning Veterans into Developers. We discuss how training in development is a perfect career path for Veterans to enter the technology sector - either as a coder, project manager, or other supporting leadership position. We also discuss the incentives for Veterans to move to Indiana to take advantage of this opportunity. Within just a few months, academy training in the technology field can open job opportunities that pay well above averages for Veterans. And within a few years, those careers drive some of the highest incomes under demand in the country. Special Guests: David Whitt and Shawn Gardner.
In this episode, we speak to Angela Allen. Angela is the daughter of one of the first 100 Navy SEALs, Howard Wesley Allen. Howard was a Navy Frogman in the Korean and Vietnam war. He also assisted with the Mercury Missions. After losing her father at a young age, Angela dedicated her life to volunteering and assisting Veterans however they needed. Listen to her unique story in this episode.As well, we discuss VA Loans in great detail. This is an incredible benefit that goes unused by 94% of Veterans! The benefits of a VA Loan include:* 100% financing* No monthly private mortgage insurance required* A limitation on buyer's closing costs* The loan is assumable, subject to VA approval of the assumer's credit* 30 year, fixed loan with interest rates similar to FHA rates* Seller can pay up to 4% of the Veteran's closing costs and even pay down the buyer's debt to help lower their debt-to-income ratio* You can have less than perfect creditAngela will share her story, discuss the American Warrior Initiative, and let us know all the updates regarding upcoming VA Loan program changes. Special Guest: Angela Allen.
On 18 June 1938, at a Navy Veterans Reunion in Quincy, Illinois, a new and powerful organization, the Navy Club of the United States of America, was launched. On that day, a Constitution and By-Laws was adopted to govern this unique and distinguished group, speaking the language of the men who go down to the sea in ships.The original organizational committee drew up a broad administrative charter that envisioned a new concept in collectively bringing together the many private Navy Clubs and Navy Veteran Organizations that had sprung up across the country, and by so doing, give each member and prospective member, a powerful voice as a Nationally Recognized Organization. With the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard men and women of the United States formed together in one great powerful service organization, it was concluded that there should come a more extensive and widespread observance of NAVY DAY, now celebrated on the 13th of October each year, a watchful eye on all legislation and laws that concerns a strong United States Navy and National Defense, a guarantee that our Navy will always be kept at such strengths that there will be no more "Pearl Harbors", a more powerful influence on American thinking on the importance of a "First Class Navy", a better and more informed medium through which the Navy Department can convey its problems to all American citizens, and to join together all sailors, marines and Coast Guard personnel into a closer comradeship. Special Guest: Geoff McCuen.
Marine For Life is an extension of the Marine ethos “Once a Marine, Always a Marine”. Marine For Life is a continuation of the Marine Corps’ strategic engagement with Marines and their families across the continuum of the Marine For Lifecycle - commencing with their transformational entry into the Corps, symbolized in their earning the Eagle, Globe, and Anchor, through their transition to Veteran Marine status and the return of these quality citizens back to their communities. Marine For Life Network connects transitioning Marines and their family members to education resources, employment opportunities, and other Veterans services that aid in their career and life goals outside of military service. Special Guests: Andrew Janovicz and Nathan Bibler.
Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing is unique in that their volunteers are teaching classes on an on-going, long term basis. It is much more than a one-time fishing trip. Their program provides basic fly fishing, fly casting, fly tying and rod building classes for participants whose skills range from beginners who have never fished before, to those with prior fly fishing and tying experience. All fly fishing and tying equipment is provided to the participants at no cost. Fishing trips, both one day and multi-day, are also provided free of charge to participants. Special Guest: Chris Jackson.
On this week's Veteran Cast, we are joined by Michael Fickert, Senior Project Manager of Purple Heart 3, a Veteran Owned & Veteran employed security company out of Indianapolis. Michael joins Veteran Cast to talk about his background in the Army, and then trying to find his purpose again after transitioning into the civilian world. Purple Heart 3 helped Michael find that purpose, and his passion for the organization & their mission is prevalent when he talks. PH3’s main mission is to ensure that the suicide rate among returning combat veterans is reduced. Special Guest: Michael Fickert.
On this week's Veteran Cast, we take a bit of a break from Veteran's affairs and speak to entrepreneur Scott Melby. Scott is a US Marine who founded Indy Custom Cornhole. Indy Custom Cornhole is the first and largest cornhole business in Indiana, starting in 2003, Scott has run over 1400 tournaments, sold thousands of boards and bags and now focus more on the rental sets and monthly competetive cornhole tournaments which feed into a national rankings of over 7000 players that qualify to compete at World Championships every summer. Special Guest: Scott Melby.
Team Rubicon’s primary mission is providing disaster relief to those affected by natural disasters, be they domestic or international. By pairing the skills and experiences of military veterans with first responders, medical professionals, and technology solutions, Team Rubicon aims to provide the greatest service and impact possible.Through continued service, Team Rubicon seeks to provide our veterans with three things they lose after leaving the military: a purpose, gained through disaster relief; community, built by serving with others; and identity, from recognizing the impact one individual can make. Coupled with leadership development and other opportunities, Team Rubicon looks to help veterans transition from military to civilian life.Serving the Underserved. Across the world, disasters are a part of life. No corner of the globe is spared from severe weather – be it crippling winter storms, catastrophic hurricanes, or unchecked wildfires.By focusing on underserved or economically-challenged communities, Team Rubicon seeks to makes the largest impact possible. Disasters represent a massive financial cost, and by providing immediate relief work, free of cost, TR aims to help communities begin recovery sooner. Special Guest: Barry Pemberton.
Since their founding, The Mission Continues has always been a nonprofit, non-partisan organization dedicated to bringing together veterans and innovative community organizations to create transformational change for communities in need all across the country.Their operations in cities nationwide deploy veteran volunteers alongside non-profit partners and community leaders to solve some of the most challenging issues facing our communities: improving community education resources, eliminating food deserts, mentoring at-risk youth and more.Through this unique model, veterans build new skills and networks that help them successfully reintegrate to life after the military while making long-term, sustainable transformations in communities and inspiring future generations to serve. We interview an Indianapolis City Impact Manager (Emily) and regional Platoon Leader (Jonathan) to find out how Veterans can get involved and what the impact is to the community. Special Guests: Emily Ferstle Angus and Jonathan Vatovec.
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