Bowling for the Brave honored Easterseals employee Chris Macklin as its Hometown Hero at its fifth annual celebration at Colerain Bowl on August 17.
Bowling for the Brave was founded by Navy Veteran Erik Day and a group of friends who decided to use their passion for bowling to raise funds for local veterans in need. This year, the organization added Easterseals Military and Veteran Services to its beneficiaries.
Macklin is a job developer at Easterseals, administering the Academics for Employment program for veterans. The program provides educational and vocational resources for veterans, as well as counseling on how to maximize VA educational benefits.
Macklin is an Army veteran who served in Kuwait and Somalia. While stationed in Alaska, Macklin suffered a debilitating injury and was honorably discharged from service.
After returning home, Macklin experienced many of the same struggles experienced by veterans as they reintegrate to civilian life. His skills as a combat medic and multichannel transmission systems operator were high-level, but his experience didn’t transfer easily into civilian employment. His injuries, and later substance abuse, also took a toll.
Macklin reached out for help and turned his life around. He earned his bachelor’s degree in substance abuse counseling at the University of Cincinnati and found a passion in working with veterans. He is now pursuing a master’s in social work at Case Western Reserve University.
“Chris is the most positive, influential, and dynamic individual I have ever had the pleasure of working with,” said Scott Robinson, Director of Easterseals Military and Veteran Services. “He can challenge, encourage, and motivate the veterans we serve with sincere compassion and empathy. His value to our program is immeasurable.”
In addition to the honors by Bowling for the Brave, Macklin will also be recognized for his service as a Hometown Hero at an upcoming Cincinnati Reds game.