Hometown Hero: Ryan Lonergan is Northeast Wisconsin’s Veteran of the Year

Hometown Heroes

De Pere, Wis. (WFRV) – A dad, a volunteer, a podcast host, and a U.S. Army National Guard vet, Ryan Lonergan spends his time helping other veterans find a platform.

After six years in the U.S. Army National Guard and one deployment to Iraq, Lonergan found his transition home to be difficult. So he’s dedicated the last decade years of his life to advocating for veterans who, like he once did, struggle to find their voice.

He does so on his podcast called Fragout.

“It gives the opportunity to other veterans to share their story, learn how to be vulnerable, learn how to share your story, learn how to talk about it because if we really want to fill those gaps in our society we have to share our failures but also our successes too and find those people that support us in every way, shape, or form,” said Lonergan.

Now, all of Lonergan’s hard work is being recognized as he is awarded Northeast Wisconsin’s Veteran of the Year Award by Representative Mike Gallagher.

“All of this is a testament to who Ryan is as a person, to his enduring commitment to Northeast Wisconsin, as well as his commitment to this country, his love of this country, and his willingness to serve this country out of uniform,” said Gallagher in front of a crowd of Lonergan’s friends and family.

Lonergan continues to spread the word and make change when it comes to many of the issues facing vets today.

But for him, it’s not about the recognition, but about building something that can stand the test of time.

“We can talk about homelessness, we can talk about professional development, but what this means to me is legacy,” said Lonergan.

“We can’t take our money to the grave, we can’t take anything with us when we die, but my daughter just got to witness this and everything that happened today is going to congress so, leaving something behind for the next generation to build off of, that’s what it means to me,” said Lonergan.

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