VFW’s #StillServing stories feature three North Dakota veterans

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Jared and service dog JJ | Courtesy: Jared Bollom

In February 2020, the Veterans of Foreign Wars launched #StillServing, a series of stories bringing attention to American veterans and their commitment and sacrifice to our country.

This campaign aims to showcase how veterans continue a life of service and how their contributions are positively impacting our society, according to the VFW.

And three North Dakota veterans’ stories — and their service — are highlighted among hundreds of entries.

Jared

Jared, from New Salem, served in Iraq from 2004-05 with Corps Level Engineers. He did explosive clearance operations, was an instructor for the Explosive Hazards Awareness Team and conducted counter IED operations.

Jared says his service dog, JJ, has helped him stay active in the state’s School Counseling Association, serve as a moderator for a veterans-only group and volunteer and testify at legislative hearings to advocate for veteran’s rights.

After returning home, Jared discovered he had traumatic brain injuries, PTSD and CTSD. He says JJ, Veterans Affairs, his family and fellow veterans all helped him find a way to still serve.

He’s a lifetime member of the VFW and Disabled American Veterans.

Corey

Corey, from Epping, served in Iraq from 2004-05 with the National Guard. He was among the first ones to look for roadside bombs and draw fire.

He’s now a volunteer firefighter and emergency medical responder.

He says after serving and retiring, he’s even more compelled to keep doing it.

Paul

Paul, from West Fargo, served as an Air Force firefighter from 1989-2009.

He is now chair for the Cass/Clay Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster that helps disaster survivors in our communities and helps with the National Flood Insurance programs.

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