We Help Pay Funeral Expenses

Because Most Families Can't

Mission Recap: Help Ease the Burial Costs to the

Survivors of Veteran Suicide

Once a Solider FAQs That Every Donor Should Know

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How We Gift

We contact families of veteran suicide and provide emotional and financial support.  Most are in dire need of both.

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Who We Gift

The charity endeavors to support the immediate family members. We follow the VA’s general program list of eligible survivors.

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What We Gift

We first seek to cover the costs service families over and above the partial VA reimbursement, but we first ask how we can best help.

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Why We Care

We’ve seen the courage and spirit of the families left behind during deployment. Now they must carry on without their soldiers forever.

Our Story

Our passion for helping the families of veteran suicide came in through the back door. Our leadership brings a long history of serving a wide array of non-profits all over the country. And that history isn’t from long ago or from just the older crowd. Inspired by the “22” awareness soldier suicide social media campaigns, Once a Soldier is made up of Baby Boomers, Millenials and Gen X’ers.

This varied group has fed children and fixed the trucks that got the food there. They’ve help the USO raise money for their No-Dough Dinners. They helped both young girls adults in their 50s and 60s – both suffering from rare neuroligical disorders specific to their age group, feel the love and hope that only comes with research funds raised.

We promise that as we grow and give more and more to the families, we will get better at all aspects of helping these veteran suicide survivors. There is no road map, no one else does this. We are pioneers in a landscape full of other veteran charities. We hope you see our value, our sincerity, and give us your supoprt.

Once a Soldier

No matter what happened to these men and women, these American service men and women, they were once a father or mother, a sister or brother. They were once happy and proud. They were once a soldier.

Who’s Committing
Soldier Suicide:

%

50 + Years Old

%

23-49 Years Old

%

New Recruits - 1st Year

Our Two-Phase Approach to the Mission

Phase One: As we are newly minted in late 2017, becoming financially stable while we raise awareness is our mandate.

Phase Two: With the first dollars available, we will gift the first of our veteran suicide.

Our Mission is Simple

Ease or erase the financial burden of the funeral costs after a soldier suicide.

Dave Barbush

Dave Barbush

Founder/President

The son of a Navy veteran, Dave now lives in Jacksonville, Florida – home to three Navy installations. My Dad’s giving heart beats in me and his willingness to take care of others is organic to this cause.  Combining that with the sacrifice that veteran families make has inspired Once a Soldier to make a big difference.

From the Founder:

When I decided to start Once a Soldier, my long term plan was to create a nonprofit the likes of which hadn’t been seen before. We succeeded in two ways. 

First, the cause is unique. There is a plethora of soldier suicide nonprofits, but after looking at the reports, we saw that as a misnomer. Soldier suicide is really veteran suicide as 13 of the 20 suicides a day are done by veterans. 

Secondly, we wanted to be as digital as possible. With finances being our gift to the families to create a silver lining, we wanted to create an easy to scale way of raising funds for the families. We need no employees (at this time) and so our costs are very small. 

After getting to know the families left behind, I’m satisfied that both ways are succeeding and that I will never run out of passion for the cause. Please give what you can and feel good about it.

MYTH BUSTER

 

 

Soldier Suicide is Really Veteran Suicide

Of the 20.6 suicides every day, 16.8 were veterans. 3.8 were active-duty service members,
guardsmen and reservists. - VA report from June 2018

Thank you.