Vets Jobs Corp - A Testimony to Success

Hire a Vet!

Today, Friday - 2/3/12 - President Obama announced plans for a "Vets Jobs Corps" and challenged Congress to approve the five billion dollars it will take to fund the program. Even before he spoke however, we've had personal experience that proves hiring a vet works - big time.

We leave our Florida home for a few months in a row each summer. Last spring the couple who used to check our house while we were away retired due to health concerns. So we had to find someone else to keep tabs on our property. My wife heard of someone who did house-checking and small repairs, and made arrangements to have him visit us.

Turns out, he's a former U.S. Marine. We could tell the minute he walked in the door: ramrod straight, all business, great physical condition and lots of comments like "Yes, maam" and "No, sir." We were impressed with how much he knew about homes and their upkeep, and we hired him on the spot. Then we went away for the summer and our house was in excellent hands. Twice he called us long-distance to alert us to a potential mechanical problem. Each month he turned on the main water valve flushed all toilets and ran all faucets, checked the humidistat, walked through each room to inspect walls, floors and ceilings, and walked the outside perimeter of the house. When we returned, the charges were exactly the amount he'd quoted, a minimal amount for all the time, gas and attention he gave to our property.

Then last November we needed a plumber, so I called our 'house-checking' Marine to ask if he knew anyone he'd recommend. It just so happens he has a list of former service personnel who now run small businesses. He gave us phone numbers of a plumber and four days later that person showed up, soon discovered the reason why our water purifier was leaking and also pointed out that it had no separate shut-off value. $154 dollars and 90 minutes later, we had two new valves and additional copper tubing - and a whole lot more information that we anticipated about different types of filtration systems, what elements they screen out, and which ones work best that he'd recommend. Needless to say, he's coming back next Monday to install a new faucet and shower head in one bathroom, our new water filter and a new kitchen sink fixture.

To add a third example, a large pine tree next to the walk that runs along our garage had pushed up sections of the sidewalk and threatened to damage our garage floor and foundation next. Who do you call? Our Marine house-checker! Once again, he had a name and a phone number for us. In a few days that person, 6'5" and able to wrench large slabs of concrete apart with his bare hands and a handtruck, was at our door. He pulled four sections of the walk, our neighborhood association arranged and paid for the tree to be taken out, and then the concrete person (who incidentally has run his own small concrete business for 14 years and also works full time for an area chain at a good job) returned to replace our walk, and is coming back again to caulk some of the joints at no extra charge.

All three of these persons are former military and at least one still serves, in the Navy Reserve. Without that first contact, we'd have been in the dark choosing people to work for us. But now we have each of them on call if the need ever arises, and we know they are polite, efficient, highly skilled, prompt and trustworthy workers - just what anyone would want, and just what our President said again today about veterans.

Based on our recent experience, we say: Hire a Vet! That goes for businesses and private citizens alike. We also throw lend support to programs that make it easier and more profitable to hire veterans. So next time you need work done, consider someone who's served our country and now is ready, willing and able to serve us - one at a time.

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