AUSA's Army Matters podcast amplifies the voices of the Total Army –
one story at a time.
Tune in every other Monday for a new story that speaks to our listeners' wide range of interests and lived experiences, with episodes covering: inspirational leadership stories, current issues for NCOs, our military families' journeys, and in-depth looks into the Army's past, present, and future.
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Twenty Four Hours' Notice to Deploy to Afghanistan
Lt. Colonel Jacob Helgestad was fast asleep in Kuwait when someone knocked at his door in mid-August, 2021. “Hey, Sir, we gotta go to Afghanistan.” Within 24 hours Helgestad’s 625 troops were landing at Hamid Karzai International Airport and in the thick of a mass evacuation. Host Colonel (Ret.) Scott Halstead speaks with Helgestad about how he had his team prepared for that very moment, the role the unit played in evacuating 124,000 people, and how science fiction military novels are a great escape (and also a tutorial).
Growing the Grains of Success
After a painful medical diagnosis, Chief Warrant Officer 5 (Ret.) Chad Butters and his wife Jodi decided to change their lives, leading them to pursue their passion about the outdoors, faming and starting a distillery. Host SMA (Ret.) Dan Dailey sits down with Chad at Eight Oaks Distillery, drinks in hand, to talk about Chad’s Army career, some sound advice for entrepreneurs and (most importantly?) what spirits he recommends.
Moral Courage and the Fight
What makes a battlefield hero? Is it upbringing, training, and being placed in a specific situation? Or a combination thereof? Host Joe Craig sits down with Dr. Raymond James Raymond, author of the book Elite Souls: Portraits of Valor in Iraq and Afghanistan, to discuss five heroes he profiled. Learn how their moral courage led them each to saving the lives of many, how these officers’ upbringings and West Point experiences influenced them, and how Dr. Raymond’s cousin’s exploits in World War II inspired him from a very young age.
Three Million Stories of Heroism and Bravery
For almost two centuries, women were not allowed to join the U.S. Military – yet millions served. Now with almost 20% of the military being female, the Military Women’s Memorial is celebrating the three million women who have served the Nation in both peace and war -- since before the founding of the Republic. Host COL (Ret.) Dan Roper sits down with CW5 (Ret.) Phyllis Wilson, the Memorial’s President, to share their stories of bravery, how the Memorial is celebrating its 25th anniversary… and what types of (crumbled) cookies taste the best in a combat zone.
The Importance of Getting Back Up Again... and Again... and Again
Throughout Master Sergeant (Ret.) Cedric King’s Army career he always faced challenges head on. His biggest obstacle, however, took place in 2012 when he was injured by an IED device and lost his legs. But rather than feeling sorry for himself, he accepted it and is now a triathlete, author and motivational speaker. Host Colonel (Ret.) Scott Halstead talks to Cedric about the superheroes that inspired him at Fort Bragg, how hard it is to learn to walk again, and how a trip to a mini-mall changed his life.