Team Rubicon

Marauder06

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I thought we had a thread dedicated to Team Rubicon but I didn't find it when I searched, so I guess I'll start one.

Team Rubicon is a what the relief community calls a VOAD, or "voluntary organization active in disasters." They were started by veterans and a lot of their membership is veteran or first responder, although that is not a requirement. Basically they roll in after a natural disaster and help people in need--anyone in need, not just vets. They've been around for a while and I've heard about and seen them around, but this is the first time I ever asked for their services.

I live just outside of West Point and our community recently experienced a "100 year flood." My neighbors' homes got hit pretty hard but my house was mostly spared. We had about 8 inches or so of water come up through the concrete in the basement and it destroyed our water heater and some of our stuff, but it could have been a lot worse.

Team Rubicon and other relief organizations like Samaritan's Purse were quickly on the scene, helping out those who were the worst affected. We weren't hit as bad as a lot of other people so we paid a guy to pump out our basement and another to replace our hot water heater on our own and didn't sign up for any assistance. "Go help people who need it more."

Today some Rubicon members were invited speakers at our Rotary Club meeting. Part of their pitch was, "all of you who have been saying 'go help other people' for the last week and a half, IT'S YOUR TURN. And we could probably get to you like... today." So afterwards I went up to them and gave them my information. "Hey, if you already helped everyone who really needed it... ." I have a large stone retaining wall in the back yard that is bowing out in some places due to the flood, and some dry wall down in the basement that got soaked and needed to be removed. The Rubicon reps at the meeting took my info and said "We'll send someone by your place in an hour." So I went home and frantically tried to clean up part of the basement so I wouldn't be totally embarrassed when they came over to look ;)

They showed up about 40 minutes after I got home, and very non-judgmentally looked at the wall and the basement. They explained that the retaining wall was beyond their expertise (which is what I expected) but that they could probably get someone to help with the drywall removal. I thanked them for their consideration and they left.

Shortly thereafter--like five minutes later--my wife and I were sitting on the front porch talking about the flood and the conversation we just had with the Team Rubicon reps when a pickup truck with Rubicon signage on it and five men in it pulled up and said, "Hey, we hear you need some drywall removed?" The group of middle aged mostly-veterans came in, looked at the walls, were like "yeah, we can have this done quickly" and got to work. Even with the time we all spent in good-natured veteran banter (my wife and I are both vets, and there was Army/Air Force/Marines and I think Navy represented so you know how that goes) and moving stuff around, they were done with the removal and cleanup and were ready go in less than an hour.

I could have done the drywall removal myself, but I'm not great at it and it would have taken me a lot more time than it did for five guys who really know what they are doing. I was extremely grateful for their assistance, and glad to know that things have calmed down enough that they could take the time with a little (to them, not to me) job.

We posed for a photo after and I gave them all .50 caliber bottle openers that I use for marketing The Havok Journal that got wet in the flooding so I can't sell them, but at least I could give them away. While they were working I tried to use my laser to etch their names and Team Rubicon on the shell casing but they finished too quick so I only got a couple etched with Team Rubicon before they had to leave.

They got that drywall out of my house before the mildew set in, which was a great relief to my wife. And they saved me a lot of time and effort.

Thanks Team Rubicon.
 

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