Yesterday, I spent 13 hours at the VA Hospital going through a battery of tests and ending my late afternoon with a CT-Scan. Afterward, I was kind of hungry and thought I’d go and see if they had any food left at the cafeteria – eh, just sandwiches. I went with the chicken salad because I didn’t like the looks of the others. It’s amazing the things you will overlook when you’re starving to death…
I grabbed a bottled water and took a seat at a table near some active duty guys in their fatigues and struck up a conversation with them. One of them was there for a dental appointment and was ecstatic that he had two weeks to go until he would be a civilian after one tour in Iraq and two in Afghanistan. As I’m listening and eating my sandwich, he goes onto say something about getting a new job and he mentions Citi Field. “Citi Field?” I said. “What’s going on at Citi Field?”
He told me they were having a Veterans Only event and would have all these professionals on hand to help them create their resumes, setup LinkedIn profiles, and even give all veterans who attend a free brand new suit, shirt and tie for the guys, and a fashionable new wardrobe for the gals. They will even have makeup professionals and hairstylists there too.
I thanked him and dashed over to my VA Counselor before she closed up shop for the day and sure enough it was all true.
Here is what she also emailed me about this wonderful Veterans Career & Resource Expo and the business attire giveaway on 9/20 at Citi Field. (Thanks, Christina!)
Veterans can register with the Save a Suit Foundation at www.saveasuit.org to reserve a business suit slot. We want to make sure we bring enough of a selection for all attending. The Fatigues to Fabulous portion of the event is catering specifically to women veterans. Designers and department stores are donating clothing, and makeup, hair & fashion stylists are attending to work with the veterans. Photographers will be there to take head shots and help with LinkedIn profiles.
As a Navy Veteran myself, I was so proud to see the Mets once again doing something to help our military. The biggest problems for many of these young men and women, is that after six years of serving under wartime conditions, they are then faced with the difficulties of adjusting back to civilian life and even finding a job. Take it from me, I know…
It’s kind of hard to get past that first question when they ask you what you’ve done the last five years and you respond, I was an Anti-Submarine Warfare specialist or that you maintained and operated the Missile Attack Console on board your ship. Not exactly what they want to hear when you apply for a management position at Home Depot.
So kudos to the Mets owners for sponsoring an event that will help hundreds of out-of-work veterans who need that chance to step back into normalcy and reengage with civilian life.
The last thing every service member does before they are officially discharged, is get a full dental and medical exam usually on base or at a VA medical center before they get their DD-214’s. Always a happy moment when your family comes to pick you up and take you home for good.