The second stop on AWI’s Texas tour was Belton, TX where Branch Managers Matt and Marc Woods along with Brad Dragoo hosted AWI. The relators in attendance were treated to a seminar on working with military clients with excellence and four hours of continuing education credit.
After a brief lunch, Sean Parnell, retired Army Ranger and decorated combat veteran, author of the New York Times bestseller, Outlaw Platoon, spoke to the crowd about the huge difference a real estate agent can make for veterans coming home from war.
Following Sean’s speech, AWI welcomed local combat veteran, Staff Sergeant (retired) Josh Abbatoye to the stage. Josh joined the Army in October of 1998 and was first deployed to Iraq in February of 2004.
In Baghdad he led more than 500 combat patrols through a city considered to be one of the most dangerous on earth. On one of these patrols a rocket propelled grenade hit the side of Josh’s tank while he was outside. The shrapnel from the RPG shredded his knee, but Josh refused a medevac until the fight was over. Josh was awarded a Purple Heart for wounds, but remained in country for the rest of the deployment.
Josh returned to Iraq for a second deployment in 2006 where he was personally selected as a MiTT Advisor to the Iraqi Army.
His final deployment was to Afghanistan, where Josh served for 9 months before returning home. Josh retired in 2015 after spending a total of three years in combat.
After separating from the military Josh was diagnosed with post traumatic stress. He found the best therapy was to take his daughter fishing. Thanks to the generous donations from Matt and Marc Woods, Brad Dragoo and the relators in AWI was able to present this worthy warrior with a $13,000.00 boat that would all him to continue the healing process and make up for lost time with his daughter.