The 5th Squad

The 5th Squad Creed

I am a veteran of the United States military.

I will fight to hell and back for my God, my family, my country and my brothers.

I will lead and be led.

My word is my bond; with honor, character, compassion, strength and courage to follow through.

I will battle injustice in our world defending the helpless, overlooked, and abused, so that freedom can reign.

I will hold all my brothers accountable to the creed and spirit of our Club.

I will treat all brothers as equals and remain accountable to all.

I will never abandon my brothers.

I will never quit on my brothers or run from my responsibilities.

From Brotherhood to Legacy

A Journey of Camaraderie, Service, and Impact

      Founded in January 2016 by four visionary members of the 184th Sustainment Command, 5th Squad emerged as a unique and cohesive force amidst the challenges of military life. The genesis of this brotherhood, known as the First IV, was sparked by a desire to defy the conventional separation that often accompanies military service.  

      Comprising Adam Austin, Michael Collins, Zach Morehead, and Lee Stringer, the First IV sought distinction among soldiers and veterans alike. They aspired to create a community that stood out by virtue of its commitment to camaraderie and service. The foundation of 5th Squad was rooted in the principle of selflessness, embodying the notion of doing for others.  

      After months of camaraderie, wisdom-sharing, and a fair share of storytelling, 5th Squad earned its name and mascot. The choice of the name “5th Squad” carried both military significance and a deliberate departure from excessive “HOOAH” culture. Positioned as part of the formation yet distinct from it, 5th Squad represented a unique entity within the military structure.  

      The symbolism of the wolf pack and its paw emerged as integral components of the club’s identity. Like a wolf pack, the members of 5th Squad were not bound by blood but had chosen to be part of each other’s chosen family. This decision aimed to cultivate a strength derived from unity, creating a bond that surpassed the traditional boundaries of military associations.  

      As 5th Squad evolved from its origins as a mere “club,” it transformed into an organization with a broader vision. Grounded in principles of God, country, and family, 5th Squad now strives to contribute to the betterment of the world around them. From its humble beginnings, this brotherhood has grown into a force that transcends military affiliation, embodying the values of unity, service, and a shared commitment to making a positive impact on the world.  

      In a pivotal moment in its journey, 5th Squad achieved a significant milestone in 2018 by obtaining 501(c)(3) nonprofit status. This marked a transformative phase in the organization’s trajectory, elevating it from a club to a formally recognized entity committed to charitable endeavors.  

      The attainment of 501(c)(3) status not only validated the altruistic principles upon which 5th Squad was founded but also paved the way for expanded outreach and impact.   

      As 5th Squad continued to evolve and grow in its mission to support Veterans and the community, it embarked on a series of initiatives and programs that demonstrated its unwavering commitment to service. These endeavors, born out of a genuine desire to make a positive impact, have become integral parts of the organization’s legacy.  

      One of the notable initiatives launched by the 5th Squad is the “Ruck for Rugrats.” Recognizing the importance of supporting not just Veterans but children as well, 5th Squad envisioned the Ruck for Rugrats as a means to provide toys and donations to children in the hospital. The Ruck for Rugrats (R4R), was created in 2016. The R4R is a 4.5 mile “ruck march” held every December to benefit the Children’s of Mississippi hospital. Participants ruck along aside each other, carrying rucksacks filled with toys to the hospital.   

      Building on the success of the Ruck for Rugrats, 5th Squad introduced the “Ruck to Remember.” Stemming from the organization’s core belief in saying the names, telling the stories, and seeing the faces of fallen heroes, this annual event serves as a poignant tribute to those who made the ultimate sacrifice. Held globally and at different times, the Ruck to Remember has become a symbol of remembrance and solidarity, uniting participants in a shared commitment to honoring the memory of the fallen.  

      In addition to these flagship programs, 5th Squad has consistently sought out innovative ways to extend its impact on the community. Various outreach efforts, assistance programs, and collaborative initiatives have been introduced to address the diverse needs of Veterans and the broader public. Whether through community events, partnership programs with other organizations, or direct financial assistance for life-sustaining needs to individuals facing challenges, 5th Squad has continually demonstrated its versatility and adaptability in the pursuit of its mission.  

      These programs collectively underscore 5th Squad’s dedication to making a positive and lasting difference. By extending a helping hand to Veterans and the community at large, the organization remains steadfast in its commitment to the principles of service, camaraderie, and the betterment of the lives it touches. As the 5th Squad’s legacy continues to unfold, these initiatives stand as testaments to its enduring impact on the lives of those it serves. 

Building a Nationwide Legacy

5th Squad's Decentralized Approach to Veteran Support

Empowered by this nonprofit designation, 5th Squad embraces a broader vision: establishing chapters in every state. This ambitious initiative aims to create a decentralized network, ensuring that 5th Squad’s mission could be effectively carried out at the grassroots level across the nation.

Each state chapter, operating under the umbrella of 5th Squad, is envisioned as a dedicated force capable of addressing the unique needs of Veterans within their respective communities. This decentralized approach allows for a more localized and targeted response, tailoring assistance to the specific challenges faced by Veterans in different regions.

As 5th Squad transitioned from a club to an organization, its commitment to supporting Veterans remained unwavering. The expanded reach and structure enabled 5th Squad to foster a greater sense of community and collaboration, transcending geographical boundaries to make a meaningful impact on the lives of Veterans in Mississippi and eventually nationwide.

With a vision that extends far beyond its initial formation, 5th Squad continues to evolve and adapt, driven by a collective dedication to service, camaraderie, and the betterment of the Veteran community. The establishment of state chapters reflects the organization’s commitment to creating a lasting legacy of support, ensuring that the 5th Squad’s mission echoes across the nation, chapter by chapter.


      Would you like to be a part of this impactful journey? Your support can make a significant difference. If you’re interested in contributing or learning more, please email us at 5thsquad@5thsquad.com. Together, let’s continue building a nationwide legacy of support for our Veterans.