Jenn Calaway served as a broadcast journalist in the Marine Corps from 2006 through 2012. Her initial tours took her to Washington D.C. and Yokota Air Base and Camp Fuji in Japan. Following this duty station, she returned to Camp Pendleton and then deployed to Afghanistan in 2009. Her time in Afghanistan was the highlight of her life. As one of the only video-trained journalists in country, she captured footage to be broadcast all over the world, including CNN, NBC and Al Jazeera. Processing that deployment was difficult and her Marine Corps career ended, having been diagnosed with combat related post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Jenn continues to reflect on that experience. She’s dedicated six years of therapy and lifestyle changes to process it.
Since separating, she attended and graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder on the GI Bill and then returned to her hometown of Salt Lake City. The transition has been challenging and she has not yet found her direction or community. Her ultimate goal is to be able to step into a working relationship with civilians and provide the leadership, perspective and grit she learned in the Marine Corps to overcome obstacles and better her community in the fullest way possible.
Jenn misses being around veterans, where she feels she can be herself, and hopes to reconnect with them in the outdoors through this program. She also thinks this experience will help her gain her resiliency again.