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From Tailored Suits to Grey Shirts

Team Rubicon Communications   |   By Eli Feret, 2016 Tillman Scholar   |   August 15, 2016
Eli Feret (pictured far right) spent part of the month of August with the Team Rubicon Disaster Response Team deploying for Operation Dry Tears in South Holland, IL

In June 2016, I signed out of the Army after 7 years as an infantry officer. I then began my journey in the business world through an MBA at the University of Chicago. Preparing to enter a career of tailored suits and market analysis, I immediately missed the camaraderie and purpose I felt while working and sacrificing alongside American Soldiers while accomplishing an important mission.

Team Rubicon was there for me. I had previously worked with Region 8 while stationed in Colorado, and as I transitioned to the Midwest I was happy to find that Region 5 welcomed me with open arms. Deploying for Operation Dry Tears in August, I found myself back in the dust and dirt of field work with a team of the best people I’ve ever known. After mucking out homes for 8 hours and sweating through my Tyvek suit, I rediscovered the bond with veterans dedicated to getting shit done that I’d missed since I signed out of the Army in June.

On my second day of the operation, I saw my name on the roster as a Strike Team Leader. I was immediately nervous and uncertain, fearing that I couldn’t do the job as well as the great TR leaders I’d worked under. Fortunately, my TRibe came together behind me. My team communicated, bonded, and set out to work together as a team to accomplish our mission; which we did. Three days later and several thousand cubic feet of debris removed from households, I knew that no matter where I went or what career I pursued, I would have a family of warriors I could rely on to band together to accomplish an important mission.