When we met Dean he had a trade and a plan but putting it into place was a dream.
Having spent 10 years in the Infantry Dean had done two tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan with the 5 Rifles Armoured Infantry.
Suffering from the after effects of being under regular mortar fire and losing friends Dean says there was a feeling that as a soldier you had to man up and deal with it – and it was hard.
Leaving the Services, where everything is done for you, for civilian life, where you have to do everything, was a difficult transition and as he and his wife moved back to the UK they struggled, eventually losing their home and their marriage.
Dean says he’s not a hero – we disagree – but he agrees that he and others like him made a sacrifice and now they don’t want to be left on the sidelines; but if they’re going to integrate they need support, a ladder out of the hole when they fall down.
Rugby for Heroes has been that ladder, a cash grant to kick start the business, practical help with logo design and signage and regular meetings with a mentor to discuss what he wanted to do and how, Deans pro-tiling business goes from strength to strength
Dean says ‘I would like to thank Rugby for Heroes for the support and the time they have given me in helping me towards my goal of working for myself and the new signs for my van.
Your support which comes with mentorship and guidance has made such a difference to me.’