by: Kory Stone/Business Manager
You might recognize the gentleman in the picture below. Maybe it would help you recognize him if he was in his wheelchair.
You may have seen Dallas Bragg rolling around Lake Land with his trusted friend and service dog Frida, a yellow lab. Bragg is actually able to walk, a little bit. While he has suffered several injuries in the past, he is suffering from a knee injury that is keeping him off his feet for the time being. These injuries he sustained from serving in the military.
Bragg is a charming man whose passion is only kept cool by his laid back, easy-going demeanor. At 30, the man has lived a full life. He was not allowed to delve into what he did in the military for the interview, but Bragg has served over ten years, four and a half in the Marines and six years in the army. According to Bragg, within those ten years he was caught in explosions five times and miraculously made it out alive, though not unscathed. His wounds were mental as much as they were physical, but what was once a weakness he cultivated and transformed into a strength. A strength, a fuel and a fire that, injuries or not, would push him into a new direction.
Bragg has a passion for creating change. He feels, in a sense, as if his life is seen as a message and an opportunity to influence. Bragg’s mission is to pull from the heart and souls of others the compassion needed to move programs of action for our wounded warriors and their fractured families. After leaving the military and getting a chance to work with other injured soldiers, something clicked, and a passion developed a new will to fight. His stressor was now his opportunity. Part of what made him so successful working with programs, such as Wounded Warrior Project and Fredrick College, is that he understands all too well the perils and pain of these heroes. We often look to our heroes for help, but often they can fall to the wayside, needing a hero themselves. Ernest Hemingway said, “The best people possess a feeling for beauty, the courage to take risks, the discipline to tell the truth and the capacity for sacrifice. Ironically, their virtues make them vulnerable; they are often wounded. Sometimes destroyed.”
Bragg wears his wounds, both inner and outer, not only as the badge of honor it is, but as a message. Bragg is planning on getting his degree in social work so that he may continue and progress towards making the lives of our soldiers and their families a bit easier. Bragg is warrior through and through, whether it is a gun or a pen in his hand. Today, he is fighting for soldiers. Education is his helmet, faith his shield, action his chariot and love his sword. His laptop is his battle station, and his words are his ammo, ammo which he seeks to pierce straight into the heart of readers. He hopes to uplift and to seek change because he has been changed.