Chris Boyer is ready to roll up his sleeves, get his hands dirty, and dive in to the VP2H mission of helping veterans and the organizations that support them. Chris first became involved with the organization about a year ago, having been introduced to its work by VP2H Executive Director Tony Drees. Chris and Tony worked together about seven years ago and have kept in touch since, even participating in speaking engagements together on behalf of veteran issues.
In fact, Chris became involved with VP2H because of one of those speaking events. He was asked to speak at the Anadarko Veterans Day ceremony in 2017. Anadarko is a valued VP2H supporter and often involves representatives of the organization at its event.
Chris was then honored with the Kevin J. Smith award at the 2017 VP2H Gala for his work with veterans. Following these events, Chris says he was able to meet a lot of board members and get an idea as to what VP2H does. He was very excited to learn about all they do, because he says his “goal in life has been to be involved and make a difference in the veteran community.”
Serving in the Marine Corps for “3 years, 9 months, 10 days, 10 hours, and 28 minutes,” Chris fought in the first Gulf War from 1989 to 1992 as an artillery cannoneer. His unit was the first to engage in ground combat, participating in behind the line raids using unconventional artillery. Chris is proud that his unit will be installed in the National Marine Corps Museum in November 2019.
Chris is now focused on helping fellow veterans. He sees VP2H’s future as one of growth, in terms of helping more veterans over a broader geographic area, eventually becoming a nationally recognized organization. He also hopes to see a growth in revenues, so the number and amount of grants given out can also increase. One of his accomplishments so far as a board member has been to assist with the recent grant awards ceremony, in which VP2H gave out $100,000 to Colorado organizations that support veterans with their work.
Veteran support organizations have played an important role for Chris as he has faced his own challenges of transitioning from the Marine Corps. He has worked with Eagle’s Nest Ranch, at first for his own horse therapy sessions and then as a volunteer and mentor to other veterans there. Recently, Chris has worked with Freedom Service Dogs, bringing home his own service dog – Lance Corporal Noodle D Boyer! – just over four months ago.
Chris is ready to use his speaking skills to help further the cause of VP2H and of veterans coming home from war. As he puts it, “War changes a person forever – you’re never the same.” He believes there is not enough focus on those who wore the uniform to help in keeping their heads straight. He wants to be a part of that solution. He knows the things they need and what they’re going through because, he says, “I’ve been there, done that, have an entire closet full of t-shirts.”
Chris Boyer has learned a lot over the years and wants to put that knowledge and his ability to reach out to others to good use. He sees that opportunity as a VP2H board member.