We Have a Personal Commitment to Veterans
Right at Home Richmond owners, Dexter and Alexa Jones were career soldiers before they opened a Right at Home office. Their life has been one of service to others. In this Q&A they talk about the Army, their home care business and what it means to be a military veteran.
In what branch of the military did you serve? When and where did you serve and what did you do?
Dexter: US Army, 1988-2009. I served at FT. Benning, GA; Ft. Riley, KS; Erlangen, Germany; Schweinfurt, Germany; Ft. Hood, TX; Freiberg, Germany; and Ft. Bragg, NC with duty in Richmond, VA. I had deployments to Iraq for support of Desert Storm; two deployments to Iraq for support of Iraqi Freedom; and Afghanistan for support of Enduring Freedom. My job was an Infantry Warfighter and I retired as First Sergeant.
Alexa: US Army, 1988-2010. Served at FT. McClellan, AL; Ft. Riley, KS; Erlangen, Germany; Kitzgen, Germany; Ft. Hood, TX; Freiberg, Germany; and Ft. Lee, VA. I was deployed to Iraq for support of Iraqi Freedom. My job was an Food Service Specialist and I retired as Master Sergeant.
How did serving in the military make you a stronger or better person?
Dexter: I have spent my entire adult life serving this great nation. Those I served and fought with are committed to defending this nation and our freedoms, as well as preserving life and the gift of democracy in other countries. Now, I’m blessed to continue serving within my community and improving the quality of life of those we serve.
Alexa: The military brought out all of my God-given qualities and shaped me into the person I am today. It instilled discipline, responsibility, values, and the ability to lead many. It gave me a sense of never quit, never give up, and adaptability. The military allowed me to earn my degree even while I was deployed.
Do you serve many veterans in your Right at Home office or in your community? If so, what do you like about caregiving for veterans?
Dexter: We have one client currently, and he served in the 1st Infantry Division, The Big Red One. Alexa and I both served in this division and we have great conversations about our experiences. Anytime there is an article on The Big Red One his daughter sends a text to let us know. What we love about serving veterans is that our military service allows us to build a stronger relationship with the client and the family. Very soon we will have the privilege of working with veterans at our local VA hospital.
Do you employ any veterans? If so, what makes veterans good employees?
Yes, because a veteran employee knows what high standards are. After a couple war stories, they’re under your mission focus and your commitment to excellence. Veterans need that sense mission and once they have it, you have them.
How has your military service influenced you as a business owner and caregiver?
Dexter: I cannot fail the people I serve. I am always mindful of The Big Red One motto, “No sacrifice too great, no mission too tough, duty first, Big Red One.” This is how I think about every client and family.
Alexa: Knowing the people that you serve and ensuring that their well-being is the top priority. It influenced me because I now have the work ethic that gets me through that tough day. I know to get it done now and not later. I think that when you are in combat and in tough situations, people do not follow you because you tell them to, they follow you because they believe in you and trust in you. You have to manage so many moving pieces and there are so many details that you have to pay attention to without losing focus on the mission. Always remember the “Be, Know, Do.” Be yourself, Know your employees and their capabilities and Do what is right.
Is there anything else you would like to say about your military service?
Dexter: Serving in the U.S. Army and working with almost every branch of service in the armed forces. The award I value the most is my Navy Achievement Medal, this is not the highest award I have earned. However, the Navy Achievement Medal reminds me of teamwork, it takes everyone to fight this War on Terrorism and keep America safe. Caring for seniors and disabled adults requires teamwork and a community effort to keep seniors and disabled adults safe.