Veteran Creates Organization To Open Door For Others
November 13, 2018
Veterans risked their lives to bring liberty and safety to our country, but what happens once their service term has ended? Ty Oswald’s support organization, Bearded Warriors, opens a door for veterans all throughout Alabama to seek help from other veterans who experienced some of the same difficulties that they faced.
In late 2013, Oswald created an online support group on Facebook, in an attempt to make other veterans feel like they had the same support system they received during their service.
“While serving in the military, individuals, both the service member and their loved ones, have a close knit community of help. Many times when a service member leaves military service, they also leave that known support network and can become lost or overwhelmed. BeArded WARRIORs is one avenue to curb that problem,” Oswald said.
Oswald himself served as a soldier for five years, as well working a 15-month deployment to Iraq. Oswald felt conflicted when he left the army and began to realize the toll it was taking on his life.
“BeArded WARRIORs came from a need, my own. I had been out of the military for a few years and found I had almost totally isolated myself from most social activities and family and friends. I went to look for help and had an extremely hard time finding where to go and who to talk to. And there were no, “Here is where you go” signs to assist me. Looking back and seeing all the trouble I had over several months getting help, I started writing down places, names and phone numbers. Instead of looking out for myself, I started sharing the information with others that would ask their own who, what, when, and wheres,” Oswald said.
It did not take Oswald long to determine the name of this support group, he knew the obvious, best option.
“For many males, when we leave the service the first thing we all talk about is not shaving after having to do so every day during our careers, so BeArded was a easy choice. WARRIORs comes from being a soldier, sailor, Marine, etc. No matter if we are wearing a uniform or not, we will always be one. The question I get most often is why is the A capitalized and the s lowercase. If you remove all the lowercase letters it leaves a statement, Be a warrior,” Oswald said.
Oswald’s organization is more than just a support group though. BeArded WARRIORs is also lending their time to support community causes that they feel passionate about.
“BeArded WARRIORs’ mission is to foster building of a network (local or nationwide) that veterans and their families can connect with other veterans and families around them. Social and physical events, like Monthly Meet and Greets or 5ks, 10ks, mud runs. Also promoting after service community service with that are both military and non-military community needs or causes,” Oswald said.
The BeArded WARRIORs support group organization is a lifeline that could aide veterans all across the community in need of help.
“It doesn’t matter what the issue is, when you served or for how long. We all run into something we may not know how to deal with. Reach out, there is help and people willing to be there,” Oswald said.