LIVERMORE (CBS13) – From fighting for our country to fighting to find work, it’s a battle many veterans face when they return home.
After getting out of the military, several men and woman say it’s hard to find a job, but now a group of veterans have found a way to help other vets, with wine.
Like a lot of veterans, when Josh Laine was discharged from the military, he wasn’t quite sure what to do.
He was dating a girl who worked in the wine industry and thought, ‘hey I can do this.’
The thing is, he didn’t know anything about making wine. So, he turned to the same place you turn to for silly cat videos, YouTube.
“We are known as the YouTube winery, a lot of studying YouTube, studying online, reading books,” said Laine.
He took that knowledge plus $1,500, and he and 10 of his marine buddies created Livermore’s Valor Winery.
That’s not bad for a guy who admits when he was serving in Iraq.
“I didn’t even know wine came from grapes,” said Laine.
Now he is taking what he learned at Valor and he is teaching other vets.
“I learn about their lives, their advantages and disadvantages, and I learn about their military experiences; and I apply that to the vineyards,” said Laine.
You wouldn’t think so but they figured out that growing grapes has a lot in common with military service, and it helps former soldiers get acclimated to nonmilitary life.
“By working in the field, you get your hands dirty, just like in the military; and just like in the military, we use a chain of command,” said Laine.
As his winery grows, so does his ability to help others that have served.
“I have the recourses now to help other vets to start their own path to their own lives,” said Laine.
It’s vets helping vets, one grape at a time.
Laine is also about a month away from planting hops, and brewing beer called Brotherhood Brew.