THE FACE OF THE COVER
My name is Joshua Allred. I’m a Utah native and currently living in Salt Lake City with my wife and young son. I served nine years in the Utah Army National Guard and Army Reserves as a 12B, Combat Engineer. During that time, I served multiple stateside missions and 12 months in Afghanistan from 2010-2011. My time in Afghanistan was served conducting Counter IED and Route Clearance operations as a squad leader. I currently work as a police officer and full time member of the SWAT team.
During my time in Afghanistan, I had a close mentor killed by a dismount IED and many of the men in my platoon incurred injury. After my return, I noticed changes in both my brothers and myself. This resulted in suicides, suicide attempts, broken homes and many other negative issues.
I look back at the feelings I felt upon returning from war. I felt as if I didn’t quite fit in with the people that had been in my life prior to deployment. I felt as if I was having trouble finding my place again. I quickly found the fire within that kept me motivated to shake these feelings. By pressing on with full force in life, I was able to find purpose again. I launched back into my police career, registered for college classes, purchased a home and expanded my family.
Don’t be afraid to talk with those around you about your experiences and embrace the positive things in your life. Purpose in life is what keeps us motivated to press on every day. Find that purpose again in your life and you too will find the fire within.