And then there are messages a man like Mike Zacchea
earned a Bronze Star for valor during Operation Phantom Fury, a major assault on Sunni insurgents in Iraq.
also received a Purple Heart.
"The first thing I remember was being flecked in the face with concrete as a sniper was shooting at me while I was lying in a pool of blood," Zacchea
didn't tell the players what he
told the Christian Science Monitor in 2010.
That after arriving home early in 2005, with a traumatic brain injury, he
wouldn't talk to anyone for months.
That one day he grabbed a clerk at a flower store hard by the neck after they got into an argument and she threw his change at him.
bathroom door on fire after his
wife locked it.
wife was an insurgent.
said Wednesday, those stories are true.
Just as the story that eventually, his
soul would heal are true.
Zacchea pursued an MBA from UConn.
From there he
turned to a goal, noble and necessary.
"I feel like I'm in a place in my life now where I can help other people who have been through what I have," Zacchea
The UConn School of Business
is among eight schools that help disabled veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan start businesses.
The intense 10-day program, funded by charities and businesses, is called the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities.
Zacchea has been there from the start as its director and recently was appointed by the school to lead career initiatives for veterans.
Since the first graduating boot camp class in 2010, 25 veterans have started 27 businesses.
brought Justin Nash of Cheshire and Doug Yeager of Winsted to meet with the media.
said, is being modest.
At one point, two freshman players, Zacchea
identified one as Casey Cochran, approached him to share their family's military stories.
"It was a fantastic day for us," Zacchea