Colin met up with WFXRTV’s Jermaine Ferrell at his hometown track, Virginia International Raceway, recently to chat about 11/11 Veteran Project’s work with Racing For Heroes, Tech For Troops, Healarious, Team UNBROKEN, and others. He also shares the feeling of brotherhood these organizations bring to veterans and how that brotherhood now reaches tracks, fans, and other teams across the country.
Did you know he trains special forces in tactical mobility driving before they deploy to combat zones? That’s just one small part of his and 11/11 Veteran Project’s work with active duty, veterans, and military families, and it could literally help save their lives. He also works with companies that want to recruit and hire veterans or market to the military community.
Turning your passions into actions, that’s what South Boston native and race car driver — Colin Garrett is doing. He is combining his love for racing with improving veterans’ access to resources.
“Both of my brothers are active Army right now and I grew up around the military my whole life. I have a family member in every American conflict throughout history so it has always been a thing. It has been in my life and my grandfather was in the Army so it has always been a thing,” said Garrett.
Collin Garrett has taken his connection and activism for military and veterans causes to another level. For the past four years while racing, he has promoted several military veteran-connected organizations on his racecar such as “Racing For Heroes,” a veteran service organization based at Virginia International Raceway that uses racing to help end veteran suicide. Garrett also has The Rosie Network, which provides training, mentoring, and resources for military spouses, transitioning service members, and veterans who want to start a business.
“The thing for “Racing For Heroes” that has kind of brought in is that the racing has helped a lot of guys to get that feeling of the adrenaline back and they get to really feel that adrenaline rush again. I guess you could say it has been really cool again with the brotherhood and they get to be back working on a car and with the guys it is cool to see,” said Garrett.
With the family military connection and his tight bond with military veterans, he has learned a valuable lesson from the men and women in uniform he has applied to his racing.
“It is actually the brotherhood with everybody whether it is the race team or it is those guys. It is just having that bond with my guys and being able to carry it on every week no matter the highs and lows just keeping it in and getting it through,” said Garrett.
Garrett said he hopes the project will expand to include more veteran organizations.