For our very own Josh Jespersen, former navy seal and Colorado 14er's ski record holder, the best way to honor those we've lost is to embark on outdoor adventures that amplify their memory.
This memorable episode of The Dirtbag Diaries features an incredible conversation with Josh Jespersen who, despite living though unimaginable loss, has managed to find a profoundly positive way of living. Listen to his unforgettable story.
Josh has become a tireless advocate for his fellow veterans seeking peace and healing through outdoor adventures. One of the issues he is most passionate about is a current bill in legislation that, if passed, will ensure barriers to accessing outdoor activities that assist veterans are evaluated and removed if needed. The Accelerating Veterans Recovery Outdoors Act was introduced to Congress on May 2019. This is a huge opportunity to make outdoor recreation an official treatment option for veterans suffering from mental health.
"I want my generation of veterans to be great stewards of the land. The public land that they fought for, and the places they should roam. I want these patriots to be pushing boundaries, while expressing a deep appreciation for the wild swaths of freedom. I hope my fellow veterans can be at the forefront of seeing the outdoors in another way."
As backcountry enthusiasts, we at Weston deeply understand the incredible benefits that come from spending time in nature and proudly support any initiative to give our veterans every opportunity to connect and heal among the wild lands they so bravely fought for. We will do our part in putting forth effort to get this bill passed.
The 10th Mountain Division
"I look to the 10th Mountain Division post WW2 for inspiration in this effort, and having this tribute deck on my feet all season helped me remember my goals. The 10th returned from brutal combat to be a monumental force in the outdoor industry as we know it today. In fact, veterans like Paul Petzoldt, who founded NOLS and brought Outward Bound to the US, may have helped changed the way many Americans see the outdoors."
The 10th Mountain Division tribute board is inspired by the strength and bravery of the highly skilled 10th Mountain troops who endured incredibly brutal combat and hostile alpine environments in World War II. Their passion for the mountains brought life into a newly evolving ski industry, opening ski resorts, managing ski schools and influencing innovation. It was the public lands they so bravely fought for that ultimately served as places of peace and healing for soldiers suffering after the war.
Follow @joshjespersen for more pow slayin' greatness