As warriors, we’ve all been there.

Intel says the target is here, and relatively unprotected.

You and your team prepare yourselves, do all your rehearsals, perform all your pre-combat checks, and you go. That’s the job, after all. Then you get there. And you find out the intel was wrong.

At best, the location is just empty. At worst…well, let’s not go there.

But when you get back to base, things have changed, haven’t they? That intel source has lost something extremely important.


We all know credibility is operator gold. If intel comes from a credible source, we can trust them. We can commit ourselves and our Soldiers (or Sailors, or Airmen, or Marines) to securing the objective, whatever it is. If trust is not present, it’s a lot harder to buy into an operation. You burn me once, I’m not going to give you the chance to do it again.

But now we’re home. Sometimes, we’re asked to trust someone who’s let us down before. It goes against the grain, doesn’t it? Specifically, what I’m talking about here is the Veteran’s Administration.

Personally, I’ve had almost exclusively good experiences with my local VA, and the VA in general. I retired in 2018, and they have continually helped me with my issues, including both physical conditions sustained while in service and that ever-present demon, PTSD.

I’ve heard the horror stories, though. Mostly from my brothers and sisters who fought before my time. The VA years ago didn’t take care of them the way they should have, and since then, they’ve suffered in silence, thinking that the best care they could hope for can only be found elsewhere. Other doctors, paid out of nearly empty pockets. Withdrawing from life. Self-medicating.

It doesn’t have to be that way. But it does take a little faith. A little trust.

Today, the problems veterans face have become more visible to civilians. They know that we warriors have always been willing to do the unpleasant things that they could not—fighting, being away from our families for years at a time, and some, even paying the ultimate price—in order to preserve our freedoms. As a result, the Veteran’s Administration is doing better for us every year. According to a recent article in the Military Times, nearly 80 percent of veterans surveyed this year said they trust the VA to deliver health care and benefits (1).

If you’re a veteran who may have lost faith in the credibility of your VA, you’re not alone. But believe me, they can help. There are programs for therapy, for medical attention, and for education and vocational help. For us, the veterans.

Sometimes, it’s complicated. Sometimes, all the red tape may feel insurmountable. But the good folks at the Warrior’s Refuge will work help you get the most out of the VA programs available to you. Not only that, but they can help you navigate other available resources at both the state and local level, in addition to the counseling and housing services they personally offer.

If you want help navigating the sometimes confusing system of the VA, contact the Warrior’s Refuge. We believe in you, and you can believe in us. We’re here for you. The Veteran Hotline is (979) 418-0247. Call or text anytime.

I’m a Warrior. You’re a Warrior. And sometimes, a Warrior needs a Refuge.

1. Shane, Leo. “Most VA Patients, Beneficiaries Say They Trust the Department: Survey,” Military Times. June 3, 2021.