Heroic Investing
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We Build the Wall with Brian Kolfage

Gary Pinkerton talks with Brian Kolfage, US Air Force veteran, triple amputee, co-founder of Military Grade Coffee and President & Founder of Build the Wall, Inc

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Gary Pinkerton hosts Brian Kolfage, US Air Force veteran, triple amputee, co-founder of Military Grade Coffee, and President and Founder of Build the Wall, Inc. Kolfage discusses his time in the service and what he’s done since leaving. He gives us an overview of his company, We Build the Wall. He has supported President Trump’s effort to build the border with private money and private property. He ends with how first responders and military veterans continue to play a role in their community even after leaving the service.

Announcer 0:04
Welcome to the heroic investing show. As first responders we risk our lives every day our financial security is under attack. Our pensions are in a state of emergency. A single on duty incident can alter or erase our earning potential instantly and forever. We are the heroes of society. We are self reliant and we need to take care of our own financial future. The heroic investing show is our toolkit of business and investing tactics on our mission to financial freedom.

Gary Pinkerton 0:39
Welcome to the heroic investing show. My name is Gary Pinkerton and I co host this show with Jason Hartman. This is heroic investing Episode 192. My guest for today’s show will leave you in. Tremendous off it is severely wounded airman triple amputee Brian kolfage Brian was on his side deployment as a security airman in support of Iraqi Freedom, when while walking around inside the base One morning, on September 11 2004, three years after the tragic events in the United States that led to these deployments, a 107 millimeter rocket shell exploded about three feet from him. It knocked off both of his legs and one of his arms. The fact that he was mere feet from their hospital was what resulted in him surviving this incredible attack and becoming the person most severely wounded, the airman most severely wounded in history to survive, and the individual most severely wounded in the military that would walk on his own and carry on a normal life. Many people obviously wouldn’t have survived that event, and many people would have given up emotionally and trying to have a normal life. That Brian has a wonderful wife beautiful Children he’s carrying on a normal life and he’s doing some tremendously abnormal things. He’s currently leading an effort that started as a GoFundMe project and now approaching a billion dollars has exceeded the GoFundMe realm and has moved into more traditional funding. He’s building a wall mile by mile matching what President Trump is attempting to do. They’re building it on private land, and obviously it’s less expensive and much more successful with less red tape than what the government is building. He also continues to visit Walter Reed Medical Center, visiting newly wounded individuals returning from war in 2012. He was invited by Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. She’s a Arizona Congresswoman, if you remember, was attacked similarly during a speech that she was giving there in Arizona, I had had dinner with her and her husband also veteran just days before this as I was visiting Tucson, the host city of my submarine, the USS Tucson with some crew members. We felt extremely closely connected to Congresswoman Giffords. It didn’t come up actually during this interview, but I, you know, sense recognize that he had been at the 2012 State of the Union address invited by Congresswoman Giffords, and that’s the one in which she resigned her position recognizing that she was going to be unable to represent going forward with the extent of her own injuries. With persistence and determination. He has beat all the odds stacked against him, and recently was awarded one of the most prestigious military scholarships the Pat Tillman Scholar Award. He subsequently graduated from the University of Arizona School of Architecture, and continues to be a leading citizen in the United States. Please help me in welcoming airman Brian kolfage. Well, hello, welcome back. Audience thanks so much for returning again today. And today we have the distinct pleasure of having US Air Force veteran Brian kolfage. And Brian was catastrophic Lee wounded back in 2004. As a tremendous history, as I mentioned in the biography leading up to this, today’s event, I feel incredibly honored to have Brian. He’s a busy individual who has done some amazing things in numerous different areas. And I’m going to let him talk about his most recent initiative and the differences he’s making for all of us out there in America. Brian, thanks so much for joining us here on rook investing. Bryan, would you take just a few moments and kind of go back to you while you were serving on active duty and the changes that occurred in your life and how you ended up here and what you’re doing now.

Brian Kolfage 4:51
Well, I joined the airforce in 2001, just before 911.my very first day of all, my training was September 11 2001. Wow, I got the run right into that. And that kind of sets the stage for where shortly after I deployed to Iraq, or the first Air Force in Iraq that doesn’t work really happened at that appointment, very typical, I guess, first of all deployment and then second appointment. were deployed to Kuwait volunteered to go run a mission I racked up. A couple weeks later, I went on a 107 millimeter rocket on 911 oh four, and it really blew up my legs in my hand. Luckily, I survived. And here I am today.

Gary Pinkerton 5:49
Today, were you in a combat zone? Were you in a boat was expected to be a safe area at the time.

Brian Kolfage 5:55
Oh, very safe. I volunteer Go around and write Alitalia Anaconda, which has a lot of rack. Very hot, very bad area is called Margaritaville. Because they launch mortars out of daily and really busy Rocket Man. The daily occurrence is more of a nuisance to most people and they said they really don’t. Yeah, unfortunately for me when I said woke up on 911 after work blocked out by 10 o’clock, and wasn’t right next to me, the very first one and they attacked a race pretty hardcore on that day. There’s really nothing I can do to prepare for that it just wrong place the wrong time. And but luckily, if it was gonna happen, that was the place to have it happen because the main hospital for that entire region was literally a football field away from love. That’s why I’m alive and this this would have happened on base. I wasn’t dead. It all happened so fast at the hospital and very, very fascinating.

Gary Pinkerton 7:00
Appreciate you clarifying. I don’t know of that many successful attacks on us bases in Iraq. I mean, perhaps I’m just uninformed. But I thought we had done a pretty decent job throughout that area of conflict of protecting the basis at least beyond the very close boundaries of the basement. Am I wrong there?

Brian Kolfage 7:22
You’re right to a degree. barking orders are very difficult to stop and they’re fired from so far away at random. Yeah. Early on in 2003 2004 2005, they’re difficult to stop them. And it got so bad that they took these weapon systems off battleships are called B with radar systems to shoot down and they come down so they felt the shoot down all incoming rockets and borders. But fortunately for me that was installed they can fly You’d have six or seven. But early on, it was like the Wild West out there. There wasn’t a lot of anything for protection. We’re living in tents. It was pretty wild.

Gary Pinkerton 8:10
Wow. Well, thanks again, Brian for for reliving that for our audience. In Minerva and her investors. You can you can see some awesome videos of what the Gary Sinise foundation does, and specifically with Brian and his family. If you go to Gary Sinise, his website about a home that was was dedicated or was provided for, for Brian that was specialized as a smart home to help out him and his family. Since that period of time. Several years have have passed Brian, what have you been up to and what are you currently engaged with

Brian Kolfage 8:44
after working for the Air Force but as a civilian physician, and I work at Davis monthan Air Force Base, a State Security Manager. So in the same career field that I had, prior to came over did the best job It allowed me to tap around my my safe people to save time to play with. And I do basically bridge the gap from from ep glutenous to be recovering and getting back out there. So there’s a good transition for me. After two years of doing that I just working the desk job wasn’t for me. So everyone kind of taught me to go back to school. And at that time, I was really nervous about like failing. And as I just lost three live overlays in my left eye, my right hand to all I had left on my left hand, I decided to try architecture of all bangs, which was kind of weird considering I lost my right hand. And I really liked but I had to teach myself how to draw how to write my name. And there’s just a lot of hard work and I have learned a lot about myself and what I was able to do and I just basically figured out that you could do anything the route didn’t matter if I lost my hands or my leg like trussed up, I decided to try to find the way to do it. And just try extra hard. And I got my bachelor’s degree in architecture. I graduated in 2014, from the University of Arizona. After that, I started off with coffee cup coffee. I’ve been doing that ever since and then slowly got into political stuff. And I felt deeply invested to our country, losing my lambs, and having children in 2014 as well and 2015 to have kids is greatly impacted by children that have breakups that we have today. I think we all appreciate the political atmosphere of what’s going on in our nation right now. There’s a lot of well into it and concerned about things and I was very concerned and I started that go viral GoFundMe back in October of 2018. And it was just a knee jerk reaction, I guess you could say, I was sick of the way things were going political that our country is like, we’re gonna get border security. And our politicians were frankly just fighting over crap that are they getting anything done until you elected them to get stuff done. So it’s one night said, I have a critical thought, maybe I can have a different maybe this book will help bring the topic back up in the news. It gets people going on it the local environment. So

Gary Pinkerton 11:18
it’ll bring us up to speed here on your GoFundMe project. Where does it stand today?

Brian Kolfage 11:22
We ended up transitioning from the gold punch of giving the money to the government because the democrats took control there, we realized there’s no way that they weren’t gonna allow this $43 million to go to President Trump. So we decided that we were better equipped to take the $23 million and build sections of the border wall ourselves on private property with that money. And so we did that we’re doing that right now. And we just created a nonprofit 501 c four called build block, Inc. and the nonprofit does just that the people can donate to it. And we don’t reward you and landowner Right now on the border, you want border security, you want protection and sick of waiting are sick of the crime. They’re sick of the property values decreasing. And we’re going to give them the border wall. It’s just that simple. Doing it privately, no different than building a fence on the property, minimal approval through the counties, some counties already have codes where you can have 25 foot barriers and things like that. And so it’s very simple.

Gary Pinkerton 12:22
That’s amazing. So how much is built?

Brian Kolfage 12:24
We’ll start breaking ground next month, we’ve been through the process of securing the land, getting landowners and just going through the entire process of permitting it. chugging along, we’ll look at the breakdown of this on one of our sites and before following after the previous month.

Gary Pinkerton 12:46
How much linear distance Do you feel like this project will cover when you’re done

Brian Kolfage 12:52
or shooting to do whatever President Trump

Gary Pinkerton 12:55
to match his his distance are saying

Brian Kolfage 12:58
the government currently pays around Ah million dollars per mile. And we can do it for between two to $3 million provide a fraction of the cost privately. And like we’re not finding the president, we want to supplement what he’s doing has the most border security combined. between the two groups, we’re focusing on areas where they’re not looking at only for, you know, the government, we know where they’re building and where they’re planning to build out the future. And then we’re going into these other areas, whether or not and we’re gonna get those commands for security. So we’re hoping to at least get 300 files, possibly. We’ll just see, we’ll see what happens.

Gary Pinkerton 13:36
Wow, what interaction Have you had with the President’s team

Brian Kolfage 13:40
or Kris kobach on our advisory board on a President Trump’s picks for DHS secretary, he’s been our backdoor into the White House and he said a couple meetings ago, oval office with President Trump. So he’s been the one communicating it hasn’t been my Southwest, representing as their President Trump has overlaid polls. Kris kobach supports us back to everyone who’s donated to this. He also supports them as well appreciate what we’re doing.

Gary Pinkerton 14:14
Got it. Awesome. So Brian transitioning a little bit from there just just thinking about, you know, your time in the Air Force your time as a someone who is was willing and almost paid the ultimate sacrifice for for everyone else in the country. You’re obviously very inspired about the republic that our founding fathers started your many, many years ago. Any thoughts or advice that you would give to those who are out there currently serving whether it’s as a first responder or in the military, it doesn’t matter. They’re protecting the citizens from evil or from very dangerous things?

Brian Kolfage 14:46
Yeah, I think it’s just important to remember that other than world carry, I think still needs to be true to that own country to our country. There’s only a small percentage of it. Nowadays, no less than 1% that take that call join the military. And it’s such a small percentage nowadays that I mean, think about it back. Because World War One World War Two Korean origin, a lot of guys are in the military, and they understood what it meant. And the next generation, they just don’t get it because they’re not in the military. And I think it’s our duty, our military to still stand up and continue fighting for our country. Whether it be you know, politically or misinforming people are going in and joining the police force supplied by whoever it may be. We need to stand up for this country and do what’s right because ultimately, they see go haywire, pretty easy for any nation. A lot of great countries have failed prop districts, almost every power country in history and failed. And I think we need to take it serious because a lot of us have been in a battle regime. The Treasury Department is Treasury and we I live in a bubble America today. And our citizens don’t understand what it’s like to be in these other countries or be in these situations where, frankly, you have tyrannies you have oppression and a lot of our stuff going on and it could happen here. Go stop that and put other countries in South America. They’re going through it right now. And frankly, 20 years ago, I wanted to get that happening. So it’s just important to stand up for our country. Regardless of you know, your political view, whatever it may be, just instead protect our freedoms for our future generations.

Gary Pinkerton 16:33
Very well said my friend. Thanks for spending some time here with our with our group can you give out some contact information so that they can learn more, both about the wall and about you personally and and what you’re doing so they can follow

Brian Kolfage 16:45
what we build the wall.us build the wall at and that they were involved in volunteer or a company. I just want to help out with the wall project. If you want to donate raise $2 million are people getting five bucks? That can’t make an impact $5 goes a long way. That $5 of $2 million donations get built a mile an order hall just follows on social media on social media as we build the wall. get you out the website. We have an amazing team of members and from Steve Bannon, the angel parents who lost their children from illegal alien Curt Schilling disco, check it out and get involved with volunteers and people involved in this project because ultimately, this is the people that we’re building. We want everyone involved.

Gary Pinkerton 17:34
Awesome. Thanks so much, Brian, my best to you and your family.

Announcer 17:40
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