Master Sgt. Rene Garcia joins Yellow Ribbon team

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Rene Garcia

The Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program provides resiliency training for Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard members before, during, and after deployment. Master Sgt. Rene Garcia, the new 301st Fighter Wing Yellow Ribbon representative, shares how this program helped him and how he plans to do the same for his fellow Airmen. Garcia has been in the Air force for 14 years, his most recent position was Quality Assurance Lead Inspector in the 301st Fighter Wing Maintenance Group.


Q: Have you attended YR Events personally? If so, how did that impact you/your family?

A: I have attended YR events before in Orlando, I brought family members as guests. It was eye opening for them, a big thing they noticed was the amount of support offered by the program.


Q: What interested you in the YR representative position?

A: When I attended my first yellow ribbon event, sometime in 2013, I felt like I was given a lot of quality information that I was not aware of as a young Airman. I can credit some good choices that I’ve made throughout my career because I was listening in those breakout rooms. So when I saw the opportunity to be involved in the program, I jumped at the chance to be a part of something that I personally have made useful.


Q: What do you hope to be able to accomplish while in the roll?

A: I’d like to inform service members of the choices and programs they may not be aware of.


Q: What are some of the challenges you’ve seen Airman face the YR program can help with?

A: I feel I’ve seen my peers deal with a broad range of different challenges. From stress management to financial management. I think that attending a yellow ribbon event can help give a new perspective in dealing with some of those challenges. Also, attending an event with family could open a dialogue of communication with them that would not have come up in day-to-day conversations.


Q: What would you tell someone if he/she is on the fence about attending the YR program?

A: I’d say just go. All you have to do is be eligible, you’ll know because you’d get an email from me. You can also give me a call at 817-782-6940 and we can chat to see where you are on your eligibility status. After that, pick a city that YR is hosting an event and I’ll see you during registration. Not all the information pertains to everyone the same. But the events also aren’t cookie cutter type meetings. Each time I’ve attended, I listened to different speakers touch different points on the same topic. Knowledge is power.


Q: Any other words of advice or info you would like to share?

A: It doesn’t hurt to ask questions when you are unsure.

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