Staff Sgt. Carlus Ross: Pressing forward
By Annette P. Gomes, Warrior Care and Transition

ALEXANDRIA, Va., - U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Carlus Ross says he was destined to enlist in the military and follow the family tradition.

"I had a great uncle who served in the Army and another uncle who served in the Marines. I knew I wanted to do something significant with my life and I knew the Army would provide me with the guidance and benefits needed to support my family," Ross said.

The Georgia native served eight years until two knee injuries forced him into retirement in the fall of 2019. Ross enrolled in the Heroes Make America Program, a 10-week career skills program that launched in partnership with the U.S. Army Soldier for Life - Transition Assistance Program and the United Service Organization Pathfinder Program at Fort Riley, Kansas.

"The program is a great gateway into the manufacturing industry. It provided hands on experience, tours of several different manufacturing facilities and helped with my interviewing skills and resume writing," Ross said.

Lisa Smith, Transition Coordinator with the Warrior Transition Battalion at Fort Riley, says veterans already possess the skills and mindset to be successful in any career. Companies have often found that veterans are especially adept at transferring many of the skills they have acquired in the Army, along with the teamwork and commitment to the mission, to several industries including manufacturing and Carlus is no exception. We are very happy for him and his future endeavors."

Ross recently began a position with a major tire company and credits hard work during his time at the Fort Riley WTB and his faith for his successful transition.

"The WTB offers a variety of activities to help with stress and your overall well-being. It also provides access to programs to rehabilitate wounded, ill and injured Soldiers. You simply have to put forth the effort to learn as much you can, which will lead to a successful transition," Ross said. "God saw me and my family through this process and it gave me a peace of mind. I have dealt with many different and challenging experiences in my career and quitting is not an option."