Robert “Buck” Clay

Location: Oregon, USA
Branch Of Service: Army
Disability: 90%


My Story

Robert “Buck” Clay started life with a little more difficultly than many others – his birth certificate has “Unknown” for his father.  Despite a difficult childhood, Buck saw the military as an opportunity to change his life and contribute to the greater good.  This ultimately led to serving 11 years Active in a variety of roles, multitude assignments throughout four duty stations, as well as four separate deployments.

Buck’s time in the military was exceptional, and among his numerous awards were the Bronze Star Medal, Army Commendation Medal with V Device, Army Commendation Medal with Silver Oak Leaf, Army Achievement Medal with four Bronze Oak Leafs, Meritorious Unit Commendation with Bronze Oak Leaf, Navy Unit Commendation Medal, Army Good Conduct Medal with third Bronze Knot, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal with Silver Campaign Star, Kosovo Campaign Medal with Bronze Service Star, Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development Medal with Numeric 2, NATO Medal, Overseas Service Medal with Numeric 6, Parachutist Badge, Combat Action Badge, and Driver Badge Wheel and Track.

Unfortunately, Buck’s service came with a cost…

full story

Buck first contacted an Army recruiter prior to his 18th birthday.  Without a high school degree, he joined the Army Reserve and then switched to Active duty via the reserve. After nearly a year, Buck was in Schweinfurt, Germany as a Combat Engineer. Moreover, shortly thereafter he obtained his GED.  Buck’s job, as a Combat Engineer was to find bombs. Alternatively, as Buck puts it, “often the bombs would find us.”   His purpose was to clear the route for other military personnel – to make their travel safe at his risk.  With a need to move quickly, this led to repeated exposure to physical injury and mental distress.  These series of unfortunate events often resulted in the mental and emotional breakdown of his fellow soldiers.  In Buck’s case, he has a variety of scarring, a spinal injury, and various other physical disabilities including a slow loss of vision in his right eye.

Part of Buck’s job within 11 years of military duty, was continuous travel into infrequently trekked areas.  From this experience, if there is one thing that he knows and loves – it is adventure travel.  His Dream is to be able to introduce that experience to others.  Buck wants to create opportunities for regular people to see places which do not have resorts, and are not found in travel brochures.  His goal is to introduce people to a world bigger than what they can expect to see from any traditional travel agencies.  Since his time in the military, Buck has traveled to dozens of countries, working for a variety of causes and, in doing so, has gotten to see a world much larger than most people can imagine.  His Dream is to bring those experiences to others.

With your help, 4Vets4Life can make this Dream a reality for Buck, and through Buck for others.  Your donation can provide the funding for Buck, in partnership with 4Vets4Life and partnering non-profits, to make that Dream not only real but also a success.  Together, we can change the lives of others by helping Buck’s Dream become a reality.