This oral history interview is an intimate conversation between two people, both of whom have generously agreed to share this recording with Oral History Summer School, and with you. Please listen in the spirit with which this was shared.
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This interview was conducted with Ryan O’Sullivan on July 5, 3017 inside the farmhouse at Heroic Farms in Hudson, NY. Ryan is a former Marine committed to serving others who are entering civilian life after the military. He details his reasons for doing this work which led him to Heroic Farms where he helps to place ex-military personnel at farming positions in upstate New York. He speaks about the struggles of entering the workforce after serving in the armed forces, the differences between military life and civilian life. He talks about how important it is to reach out to others in this position because no one can understand what it is like to come home after deployment except someone who has also lived through the same experience. Ryan discusses how difficult it is to reach younger ex-military people in projects and their relationship to the VA. He also discusses the logistics of the Heroic Farms Project and his hopes for the project in the future. He is very excited to offer local farm work to Veterans for several reasons. Towards the end of the interview he expresses an appreciation for the area though he lives in Poughkeepsie and has positive things to say about the new economic boom he sees happening in Hudson. He also discusses his political views and how his time in the Marines changed his feelings about war.
This interview would be of interest to people looking for information about returning Veterans in upstate New York, the Heroic Farms Project, and what it is like to be involved in Veterans affairs in the area.
Hannah Beal lives in Red Hook, NY where she is a farmer.
This interview is hereby made available for research purposes only. For additional uses (radio and other media, music, internet), please click here to inquire about permissions.
Oral history is an iterative process. In keeping with oral history values of anti-fixity, interviewees will have an opportunity to add, annotate and reflect upon their lives and interviews in perpetuity. Talking back to the archive is a form of “shared authority.”