Founder/CEORaina is the Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer of Battle Buddy 4 Life. She and her husband Gene (who is a combat Veteran with PTSD) were married in 2002. They have two beautiful daughters ages 15 and 12. Raina works as a Floral Manager for a local grocery store. In addition, she also volunteers her time as a Girl Scout Troop Leader and as an advocate and voice for children in the local Guardian Ad Litem program.
Raina knows first-hand the daily struggles, stresses and implications of living with a partner who has been diagnosed with PTSD. This is why she co-founded Battle Buddy 4 Life. During their transition from Active Duty back into the civilian sector, Raina realized that there was limited support for veterans and their families during this pivotal time. It is Raina’s hope that Battle Buddy 4 Life will help support the Veteran (and their immediate families) to maneuver through this transitional period, not only through the Veterans Administration benefits system, but also to assist in locating treatment within their local communities.
Co-Founder/President/Chief Operating Officer
Gene entered into the military right out of high school where he went off to Basic Training at Lackland AFB, San Antonio, TX. He completed his first term of his contract with the Air Force late in 1999. Early in the year 2000, he joined the Army National Guard when he met his spouse Raina and they married in 2002. Gene and his wife have two beautiful daughters ages 15 and 12. Two days after his marriage to his sweetheart, he got deployed to GITMO for 15 months to work the detainee prison camp as a military police officer with the National Guard. In 2004/2005, he returned to active duty this time with the United States Army, where he served until he was medically retired in October of 2012. During his time in the Army, Gene has served in 9 different deployments with his latest one being Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation Enduring Freedom in 2008 where he served in Iraq. During his time in the military and more so since he retired, he has noticed a great need for Veterans and their families. He decided to start a nonprofit corporation called Battle Buddy 4 Life, in hopes to be an outlet for all military veterans to find help and resources in which they need in order to survive and cope with the “Hidden Wounds of War.” Battling with PTSD, clinical depression, chronic anxiety disorder, chronic insomnia, and Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) himself – Gene understands that help from the VA is extremely backed-up and not forth-coming, so he understands and empathically sympathizes with the Veterans and their families.
Karrie has been affiliated with the military for almost 50 years (her entire life). Her father was a member of the USMC during the Vietnam police action. Upon graduation from high school, she enlisted and served honorably in the United States Navy, during the Desert Storm/Gulf War Era periods, reaching the rank of a non-commissioned officer (Petty Officer). Upon her discharge she became a disabled veteran. Since 1991, she has learned the VA system and the process to assist veterans (and their families) in advocating for their benefits that they are entitled to within the VA system. It is Karrie’s hope that Battle Buddy 4 Life can become an integral part of a service members transitional period from Active Duty to Civilian Life. She is married to a fellow USN-Disabled Veteran.
Website Designer/Information Technology
Nate is a long time friend and brother to Gene. He currently serves on Active Duty with the Air Force as a Senior Non-Commissioned Officer. Nate is a loving father and devoted husband. In his spare time, he serves in the capacity of the website designer and IT guy for Battle Buddy 4 Life. Nate also has his own business that he runs during his spare time. Nate’s Woodshop is custom made wood designs, military coin display cases, ink pens, etc. He believes that Battle Buddy 4 Life is a valuable organization to help bridge the gap between active duty personnel transitioning into the civilian life.