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Guardsmen Help Each Other Re-integrate

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unhappycamper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-28-07 10:03 AM
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Guardsmen Help Each Other Re-integrate



Guardsmen Help Each Other Re-integrate
Army News Service | Kim Lippert | November 27, 2007

SALEM, Ore. -- Three Oregon National Guard Soldiers, bonded by catastrophic injuries and lost loved ones, are help other Soldiers readjust to life as civilians as part of the Oregon National Guard Re-integration Team. Oregon is the only state that combines its re-integration efforts with the jobs program and the Career Transition Assistance Program.

The Oregon NG Re-integration Team works with federal, state, local and civilian agencies, and refers servicemembers to resources for help with any need they may have, including the Department of Veterans Affairs.

"We are in effect, a highly networked 'help desk' where we act as 'traffic cops' to direct Soldiers and Airmen to the right place," said retired Col. Scott McCrae, who became involved in the program after losing his son in an improvised-explosive attack.

Sgt. 1st Class Vince Jacques of the 2nd Battalion, 162nd Infantry had to return to Oregon after he was seriously injured in an IED explosion. Chronicled in the book "Devil's Sandbox" by John Bruning, Sgt. 1st Class Jacques' first concern was his Soldiers, his 'boys,' and leaving them in Iraq was difficult.

"Knowing they were over there and I wasn't was really hard," he said.

Sgt. Luke Wilson from the 2nd Bn., 162nd Inf. was also coping with immense loss after he lost his leg to a rocket-propelled grenade in Iraq. Sgt. Wilson said he felt aimless after leaving Walter Reed Army Medical Center.


Rest of article at: http://www.military.com/features/0,15240,157095,00.html
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