There are more than one million service members in our United States Armed Forces and a collection of branches and categories within. They serve on snow-covered mountains, scorching deserts and open water. Service members experience a variety of harsh weather conditions. Chris Falk, President of Heatsheets, spoke with Director of Strategic Partnership and Alliances, Diversity, Inclusion Veterans Advisor at City of Hope and U.S. Army Veteran Victor LaGroon to learn more about his experiences in the army, his thoughts on Heatsheets and ways we can support our service members.
There are five branches within the United States Armed Forces, and each branch has a different strategy based on what works for them. The army is a large branch, while the marine corps is a small branch; and just like any other organization, both use different tactics to operate efficiently. What works for one branch may not work for the other, and Chris wanted to know how Heatsheets can help meet those specific needs.
“I wish I had one or two Heatsheets in my pack for all the rigorous trainings that we had. At Fort Drum, the weather can get down to -30 degrees, and that temperature does not prohibit you from your day-to-day operations and training,” said Victor LaGroon.
Victor served in a cold-weather mountain warfare light infantry unit in Afghanistan. He recalls the constant rigorous training and performing tasks and drills in the frigid cold. To prepare for this deployment he trained in the Arizona desert at Fort Huachuca. Despite heat reaching 106 during the day, he had not idea how cold the desert gets at night when it drops down to 60 degrees. This precipitous drop in temperature can be hazardous on the body and this is a great example of when Heatsheets would have come in handy.
Service members performing outdoors are at constant risk of hypothermia and related, cold-weather injuries. Heatsheets are a great product for service members to have on-hand – no matter the weather circumstance. However, insulated sheets are considered a specialized product, so most units don’t provide their members with it in their kit.
“If everyone did cold-weather warfare, everyone would have something like this. Unfortunately, they don’t.” said Victor.
He notes that the only way to get products like Heatsheets exposed to units is the tedious procurement process at the pentagon or mustering up some demand.
“When operating in and around the water, these sheets work well even if you’re out for extended periods of time. The tactical colors make them a practical piece of equipment,” said a Former Navy Chief of Joint Special Operations Command.
Heatsheets is eager to get further involved with the Armed Forces and would like to eventually provide our lightweight, robust solutions to all members since it serves virtually all weather. Our light, compact sheet makes it so that members can easily pack it in their kit without removing other important items, and a variety of color options makes it easy to use for many landscapes.
Along with our public safety sectors ranging from first responder and education workers to nonprofit and alternative medicine clients, Heatsheets is on a mission to serve and support those who serve us.
Visit our website to learn more about our safety blankets.