North Alabama is home to many of the quiet professionals who are members of the 20th Special Forces Group (ABN); which is also part of the Alabama Army National Guard. These soldiers fill the ranks of not only the Group headquarters in Birmingham; they also fill the ranks of an entire battalion headquartered in Huntsville.
The Special Forces Soldiers of the Alabama National Guard are an integral element of the United States Army Special Forces known as the Green Berets. The Green Berets are the largest component of the U.S. Special Operations Force and due to their unique mission; both the National Guard and Active Duty soldiers assigned to these units have shouldered a heavy load when it comes to the war on terror.
The President of the Green Beret Foundation a non-profit 501(c)3 charitable organization that provides support to these soldiers is SSgt (R) Aaron Anderson formally of 7th SFG. Traumatically wounded in 2006 and since retired, he has pulled together an outstanding Board of Directors and Advisors all of whom are former Special Forces Soldiers and one very incredible Special Forces wife, Jennifer Paquette.
Jennifer Paquette is the Director of Operations and member of the Board of Advisors for the Green Beret Foundation and she agreed to be interviewed for this article:
Examiner: How and why did you get involved with the Green Beret Foundation?
Jennifer: My husband, Roland Paquette III, was an 18d with 1/3 SFG and was severely injured December 28, 2005 when his vehicle was hit by an IED. He lost both of his legs above the knees. So I started working for the USSOCOM Care Coalition to start a pilot program for injured and wounded Special Operations warriors and their families.
Examiner: What is your mission and how do you hope to achieve it?
Jennifer: The Green Beret Foundation provides unconventional resources to facilitate the special needs of our wounded, and we provide unique support to the community in order to strengthen readiness and uphold Green Beret traditions and values.
Examiner: What are the goals of the Foundation?
Jennifer: Our immediate objective is to alleviate any gaps in care for wounded Green Berets and their families. We are also trying to spread the word about the Foundation and holding fundraisers to meet immediate needs. Our long term goal is to develop a resource network that will enable the Foundation to support injured Green Berets for as long as it takes.
Examiner: What are some of the activities being supported by your organization?
Jennifer: We provide advanced rehabilitation, operational health/performance programs and equipment. We support treatments not covered by the government like In-Vitro fertilization for those whose reproductive capacity has been affected by their wounds. We provide career & educational opportunities along with life reintegration assistance. And we provide transportation and lodging for the wounded and their families when needed.
Examiner: What can the readers of the Military Headlines Examiner do to help your organization accomplish its goals?
Jennifer: Volunteer or donate your time, money, expertise and assistance. We need as much help as we can get.
Examiner: Is there anything else that you would like to add?
Jennifer: Please let everybody know that those who have volunteered time or donated money to the Foundation have truly made a difference throughout the Green Beret community.
Please feel free to contact the Green Beret Foundation at:
Green Beret Foundation
PO Box 8250
Huntington Beach, CA 92646
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