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The Ambitious VET Show

Aug 10, 2022

When trying to build a life, raise a family, and advance in your career post-military it can be challenging when you are still carrying unhealed wounds that cause you to isolate yourself, numb yourself with vices, or have you neglecting self-care. In this episode, I dive into the trenches with Jay Fondren (Combat Army Veteran and Director of Operations at Wildops) and JB Basaldua (Marine Corps Purple Heart Recipient and operation facilitator at Wildops) where they both share their challenges and how they overcame things like isolation, self-care, and building accountability partners around them to support in their own healing and growth in life after the uniform came off. 

Impactful Moments of the Show:

4:00MM: What is isolation and how can we overcome it?

13:00MM: Jay- overcoming numbing behaviors like becoming a workaholic to avoid taking care of what matters most.

20:00MM: JB- catching the red flags to keep your health trending in the right direction.

25:00MM: More about Wildops and how they are fostering deep trusting relationships and healing at their events. 

30:00MM: Last few saved rounds!

Learn more about Wildops here:

More about Jay Fondren: 
Jay is originally from Corsicana, Texas. He enlisted in the US Army at age 19 as a forward observer. He was stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, and deployed to Iraq in 2004 with C Trp 10th Cav (Brigade Recon Troop), 1BCT, and 1 CD. On November 24, 2004, Jay was severely injured by a roadside bomb and in October 2005 Jay was medically retired from the military. After the military Jay worked for several years for the Department of Veterans Affairs. While at the VA, Jay realized the need for faith-based care and support for Combat Veterans and left his management position at the VA to do full-time ministry work. Jay previously worked for the PTSD Foundation of America. Jay, Anne, and their six children live in the Houston area. Jay is a graduate of Dallas Baptist University (DBU) with a BAS in Christian Ministry.  Jay is also an Ordained Christian Minister. He attended his first Wild Ops trip in 2021 in Tennessee. He currently serves Wild Ops as the Director of Operations. 

More about JB Basaldua
Filling the Enlisted Veteran seat on the Wild Ops Board of Directors, Lance Corporal Basaldua served in the Marine Corps from 2003-2008. Seriously wounded during his first combat tour in Iraq, he was awarded a Purple Heart.

After participating in a Wild Ops Operation in the summer of 2021, JB joined the Leadership team. He serves as an Operation Facilitator and on the Vetting and Access Teams. JB brings an invaluable perspective to the Board as combat wounded veteran whose life is being transformed through his Wild Ops experience. He is committed to working with fellow combat veterans who seek healing from their combat trauma-related wounds. JB and his wife, Melissa have been married for 18 years and have 3 children. A dedicated husband, father, and man of faith, JB is actively involved in ministry at church and raising his family. They reside in Rockwall, TX.

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