Somebody to relate to: New veterans organization about supporting brothers and sisters in arms

News

After eight years in service and four tours overseas, a Quad Cities veteran said he would not stop serving.

He’s committed to helping his fellow veterans.

Leo Kaalberg told Local 4 News, he was inspired to launch his own non-profit after wrapping up with another non-profit.

Random Acts of Veterans got off the ground in the fall of 2018. 

One of his primary missions is to connect his brothers and sisters in arms with people who can relate.

Leo Kaalberg said this organization is not reinventing the wheel when it comes to services.

What he wants to provide are activities and services that have benefited veterans in other parts of the country and bring them here to the Quad Cities.

Part of the reason, he said, is he knows how veterans can struggle. 

Founder of Random Acts of Veterans Leo Kaalberg said, “When you’ve traveled those rocky paths and smooth the roads for everybody else, it’s your duty to show everybody that way.”

A combat medic still working on his recovery.

Kaalberg said, “Was injured pretty bad and I lost part of myself with that.”

For Kaalberg, helping him come back has been by supporting his comrades.

Bit Tech Computer Solutions owner Shaun Brown said, “He has taken it upon himself and drive to other states even, with veterans late at night. Sit with them all hours of the day and night to make sure they’re getting help.”

Kaalberg is looking to grow his efforts with Random Acts of Veterans.

Kaalberg said, “I’ve always felt the need to continue serving, in some capacity taking care of my brother and sisters in arms.”

He has four main projects to start of the year.

A monthly buddy check event, on the 22nd. The 22 is the number of veteran suicides each day.

Kaalberg said, “Get them comfortable with going back out and being part of society.”

A veterans garden, interviews to document vets’ stories and the I’ve Got You 6 Initiative.

It’s military slang for covering someone’s back. 

Kaalberg said, “Kind of our motto is never above, never below, always beside, we’ve got your six.”

Kaalberg said veterans in need can come to businesses and individuals with the IGY-6 decal, like Bit Tech Computer Solutions or Integrated Functional Health.

Integrated Functional Health Owner Matt DeWild said, “Being the resource place for veterans to go if they needed some help.”

Inside, there will be contacts for Random Acts of Veterans team members and services and resources around the area.

For the businesses, it’s also a way to bring their experience to the table.

DeWild said, “We were all onboard, 100 percent right away. We’ve already been helping many veterans in the area through our different initiatives.”

Kaalberg says his goal is meeting the main need among veterans.

Kaalberg said, “They need somebody else that they can relate to.”

The first big event of Random Acts of Veterans was distributing nearly 50 Christmas trees to veterans and their families last month.

Kaalberg said what people can do to help is to join the community he is forming, so no vet has to go alone.

To learn more, visit the group’s Facebook page.

It also has information on how to take part in the first Buddy Check event. 

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