GORUCK had become the bridge I needed between my military service and the civilian world. One day at a time of doing what we thought was right and time flies.

And then one day in 2013, Java got sick. He was my anchor and had saved my life from rock bottom. I’d climbed 14,000 foot mountains and led Challenges and seen the world with that dog, and all of a sudden I found myself sleeping next to him on a cold hospital floor for weeks, hoping the latest round of tests would show us a road to recovery. Instead, he withered away to nothing before my eyes, and I had to say good-bye. I still get teary eyed just thinking about it, and the only person I most wanted to see was Emily.

Maybe you saw this coming from the origins story, but we ended up getting back together, after our “little break.” We live in Jacksonville Beach with Monster and our kids, not far from where we met the summer before our sophomore year in high school. We’re a short bike ride to GORUCK HQ, where we work together, too. And she should be so lucky to be her boss’s boss :)

I guess you could say that GORUCK is a success story, and it feels like one to us. When I think about the trek we’ve taken to get here, it feels long and windy, beautiful not for its perfection but for its character, rewarding more so because the end is nowhere in sight. And it all started with a silly sentence from a girl I’ve always loved about doing “the go-ruck thing.”

Which became GORUCK.

We’re a little bigger now than shipping rucks out of my DC condo, and yet our mindset then is our mindset now. A foundation in the Special Forces way of life, inspired by the good you can do in the world if you work really hard at it, and the knowledge that it’s all a gift, so make the most of it.

Yes, we build gear. Yes, we lead events, build teams and strengthen communities. But only because if we didn’t, we’d have to find some other way to change the world, one day at a time.

Jason Sig