My name is Creed Piel. I served for five years in the navy and 10 years in the army. I did multiple deployments worldwide. I have been through many specialty schools that will help me transition into this career. Or I like to call it my “calling” literally everything I have been through with the military I will be able to use on a daily basis. From mentoring, coaching, guiding or just an ear to listen.
I am well aware that many of these climbs and summits might be beyond my technical know how, at least right now. However, I am training on a daily basis to better my skills, knowledge, studying, and I ask a lot of questions. I’m sure I’ll be reaching out for help and looking for guides when I get to the larger and more technical summits.
I currently live on the East Coast until late this year or early next year. My goal is to reach the summit of all the highest peaks in the nearby states. Then I will move back to Colorado where my non-profit, SummitForVets, is located. I will be doing at least one summit a weekend until the weather starts changing for the worse and then hitting it hard again in the spring and tackle the west coast in the Summer.
This adventure is much more than just trying to reach the summit of every tall mountain in the country. I have big plans for this organization. With an ultimate goal of converting my land in Colorado into a school-type environment. A place where veterans can come and learn or just relax by the 1.5-acre pond. But, for right now I just want to show all my brothers and sisters how awesome life can be. I want them to live a full life so when we are grandparents we can tell crazy adventure stories, instead of tales about getting drunk all the time.
I am in the process of being medically retired. I’m just waiting for the magical date that was given. In the process, I have been through many “mandatory classes” and “life skills orientations.” Often these classes are taught by people who don’t really understand what many veterans have experienced. I made so many good connections with people during these meetings that suffered from depression, chronic pain, anxiety, PTSD, etc.
I started camping with my buddy who has extreme PTSD, TBI, depression, anxiety, and suffers from chronic pain. I watched him as he transformed from this guy with so many barriers, struggles that he put up himself. Maybe to protect himself, however, I saw them disappear. Just by being outside, learning new skills, camping, and hiking, I finally got him to reach the summit of a few mountains. He was renewed and honestly so was I.
I sat down and made a pact with myself that I would give back to my brothers and sisters who are struggling so much. I want to provide them with a group that understands them and will push them to be better.
I’m able to use all of my military training in one job and combine it with a passion of helping other and the outdoors. In my eyes, our Veterans deserve so much more. I’m not just saying that because I am one. We lose too many to suicide and addiction. In today’s culture, we pop pills and are told that they will make everything better. Especially in the military. This organization is here for our veterans to show them how strong they can be and how strong they already are. I also want to let them know there is a group of people like them who fought through the pain to see the beauty of this amazingly beautiful and FREE country.
Anyone is welcome to join the summits, show our veterans that they are supported and there are people that truly adore them and everything they have done and sacrificed.