Returning veterans swell ranks of US entrepreneurs

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Associated Press

Posted on October 13, 2012 at 9:30 AM

Updated Saturday, Oct 13 at 9:34 AM

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — A former Navy truck driver running his own transport business is one of a growing number of veterans from Iraq and Afghanistan making a new life as entrepreneurs.

Ed Young faced constant threat of attack on wartime roads in Iraq that left him struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts.

Four years later, he is driving for his own Connecticut company with his life back in control.

He received training to run his enterprise through a program for disabled veterans at the University of Connecticut, one of many efforts emerging nationwide to help returning service members start small businesses.

More than 200,000 people are discharged from the U.S. military each year, and advocates say they often possess qualities that make good entrepreneurs: resourcefulness, a taste for risk-taking and a can-do attitude.

This story is the latest installment in a joint initiative by The Associated Press and Associated Press Media Editors taking a closer look at this latest generation of war veterans as they return to civilian life, and the effect this is having on them, their families and American society.

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