Hey everybody! I'm one of the volunteers at Victory Gym. I thought I'd give you a glimpse into the world we civilians share with the vets and first responders who inhabit this space.
I never realized this before I started volunteering at the gym, but there are some personality traits that seem to go hand in hand with the whole military orientation. It's probably a sad commentary on my personal powers of observation, but there you have it. There's a lot of good natured ribbing that goes on between the branches, a distinct lack of a filter (if it's in the head it's out the mouth), and very little patience for *ahem* baloney. The entertainment value is priceless - we're always cracking up about something somebody said!
There's also a degree of loyalty and empathy that is unique and beautiful. Unfortunately, more than once our board members have gotten a call from a brother or sister who was on the verge of implosion. Help was unhesitatingly given, in whatever form was required, from sitting up all night talking to driving over and taking them to the hospital. This brother or sister might be someone that they never even met before, but it doesn't prevent them from going. The motto "no one left behind" is alive and well at Victory Gym.
Mike (our founder) is always saying that he understands why the veterans help out but he's astonished at the time our civilian volunteers put in. It's really pretty simple. We're humbled by the sacrifices that they've made for us, including first responders, and grateful for the opportunity to serve in this small way. They say it's just their job. We say it's much more.
Peace and prosperity, friends!