My name is Zakia Thiesen, pronounced (Zah-Key-Ah Thee-sin) I am originally from the City of Owatonna, Minnesota where I was born and raised until just before my 13th birthday. I have lived in Maine since. I currently reside on the coast with my 6-year-old daughter and our two dogs. I pitched the idea of a blog about Veteran’s and the trials and tribulations, veterans go through when transitioning to civilian life from active duty life to the Bangor Daily News and here I am, writing this for all of you. I am fairly active within the American Legion here in Maine. I currently am the 1st Vice Commander of the Charles C. Lilly American Legion Post 149 and the 2nd Vice Commander of District 7.
I spent four years on Active duty in the United States Navy. My first command after graduating boot camp in summer 2007 and “A” school (MOS Training) was on board the USS George Washington CVN 73 when she was stationed in Norfolk, VA. The ship was homeport changed in 2008 to Yokosuka, Japan. From Japan, I moved to San Diego, CA to shore duty. While I was in the Navy, my job title was Culinary Specialist. Basically, as many would consider it, I was a glorified cook. I don’t feel that way, though. I did learn quite a bit about the Culinary Arts. But that’s not why I’m here. My hope for this blog is to open a few bridges for not only my fellow veterans but for those who may not fully understand veterans and our way of thinking. To help other veteran’s transition from military to civilian life, navigate the VA Healthcare system and find the friendships that at some point, you will miss.
Finally, I’d like to ask you to ask yourself what can you do to help Veteran’s transition from military to civilian life. If you are a veteran, I want to hear from you about some of your issues be it the VA, hunting for jobs or any other obstacle you have faced as a veteran. The last thing I’d like to ask is that if you are a veteran, why not join the American Legion or the VFW. If you have looked into those organizations but didn’t feel it was right for you, I want to hear why. You can follow me on Facebook here.