Veterans returning to face another tough battle
CHICAGO – Matthew Saldana proved himself in a world where stress, danger and life-and-death decisions were routine. He served one tour in Iraq and a second in Afghanistan. But the Army veteran is having a harder time back home navigating a calmer but uncertain terrain – the job market.
On this spring day, Saldana is roaming the aisles of a noisy ballroom in the Hilton Chicago at a Hiring Our Heroes job fair. Dressed smartly in red tie and black suit, he clutches a leather folder containing his three-page resume, joining hundreds of other vets looking for opportunity and a paycheck.
“It’s frustrating trying to get back on track,” the 29-year-old Saldana says, his soft voice barely audible in the din of the crowd. “I always thought if I get out the military, I’d be a step up. That’s not what it takes. It’s who you know.”
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