Be the One podcast series debuts

As part of its initiative to reduce veteran suicide, The American Legion Tango Alpha Lima podcast is debuting a new monthly episode starting today, devoted to Be the One. Through this series, The American Legion aims to further elevate the discussion, raise awareness, and ultimately prevent veterans and servicemembers from being lost to suicide.

The series will be available at the Tango Alpha Lima web page. Subscribers to the main weekly podcast will automatically receive the monthly Be the One episodes.

Marine combat veteran and current Navy reservist Amy Forsythe, an award-winning multimedia journalist, is the host of the series, which will have a new episode on the first day of every month. In this month’s episode, Forsythe welcomes fellow Marine veteran Waco Hoover, who recently led the Be the One Symposium at The American Legion’s national convention. In this new episode, Hoover talks about the next phase for the Be the One initiative.

“We’re doing an extensive amount of research and also looking for suggestions from our community about who we should be aligned with,” he said. “We have to have a conversation about this issue, this topic.”

Forsythe will lead the conversations on the podcast. As host of the new series, she will interview thought leaders, scientists, researchers, and others who will discuss topics related to preventing veteran suicide, breakthrough therapies and more.

“We’ll be talking with a myriad of people, to give energy and momentum to a voice to help our folks at the local level and provide resources for them. I am really proud to be working with The American Legion on this to bring it to the forefront,” said Forsythe, who deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan as a U.S. Marine combat correspondent and now continues to serve as a public affairs officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve.

Forsythe says the time is now to launch such a podcast.

“It’s an all-hands on deck effort to talk about this topic that has been somewhat pushed aside or put in a box,” she said. “But the time is now. There is a sense of urgency to talk more about it.”

When Forsythe was first approached about hosting this series, she thought it was the best way “as it aligns to my own values, as a veteran myself. This is where I can best leverage my experience, my passions and my interests to help veterans. The American Legion is one of those organizations. For more than 100 years, The American Legion has advocated for veterans and understood their issues, not just at the national level but at the local level as well.”

Through this initiative and others, The American Legion hopes to leverage senior military leaders and other influencers to rally around the cause.

“The Be the One podcast series is going to highlight our thought leaders, our scientists, our folks in the field and those advocating for our veterans,” she explained. “We are going to talk to these people and find out what’s going on and hopefully, it will be a resource for our listeners. It will be a great resource and hopefully it can help someone. And if it can help one, just one person — and if I can ‘be the one’ to help that one person — that’s the most important thing that we are after.”

That’s Hoover’s mission.

“It’s always been near and dear to my heart,” Hoover said about veteran suicide. “Due to family reasons and losing close friends like many of us have. The elegance (of Be the One) is in its simplicity. All of us need to ‘be the one’ to have our eyes open and our ears to the ground for someone who may be struggling or who is in need.”

Check out this episode where Forsythe appears as a guest and shares how she busted a case of stolen valor.

This Be the One episode is among nearly 200 Tango Alpha Lima episodes for veterans, servicemembers and others. The next Be the One episode will drop Oct. 1. All episodes are available in both audio and video formats here. You can also download episodes on iTunes, Stitcher or other major podcast-hosting sites. The video version is available for viewing at the Legion’s YouTube channel