Stamford veteran pays it forward, asks all to show their gratitude to those who served

Stamford resident Cortland Mehl may be retired from the Army, but he still finds ways to encourage the next generation to get military experience

News 12 Staff

Nov 13, 2020, 7:22 PM

Updated 1,310 days ago

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Veterans Day was on Wednesday, and News 12 is showing our appreciation all week for those who served.
Stamford resident Cortland Mehl may be retired from the Army, but he still finds ways to encourage the next generation to get military experience.
With 21 years of service in the Army, Mehl is full of stories, some intense and some happy. The experiences shaped who he is today.
"Growing up without a father, being a widow's son, it was part of my spiritual, cultural, made me a man, I'll put it right there, made me a man. I'll never regret it," Mehl says.
He started as a boat platoon leader right after the Vietnam War. Years later, he was called up for Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm in 1990-91.
He credits the Army for his education.
"The Army through the Vietnam-era, GI Bill bought me three Masters degrees," Mehl says.
Mehl also got a doctorate at the age 66.
He pays it forward. He is a substitute teacher for the New Canaan and Greenwich school systems and is still part of the Catholic War Veteran Group.
"For the past 13 years, I'm still currently serving with the U.S. Air Forces Civil Air Patrol as an aerial photographer and mission observer," Mehl says.
Mehl believes in the power of being in the military for the next generation.
And at the very least, asks everyone to remember and to show gratitude to those who served.


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