Even after five deployments overseas, Sgt. Woodrow Valle is still a member of the U.S. Army, but he was making contacts at the Heroes 4 Hire job fair for the day he gets out, shaking hands and handing out resumes.
He was one of the 1,200 job seekers the Connecticut Department of Labor counted at the annual event at Rentschler Field on Tuesday, the 10th time it's organized Heroes 4 Hire.
"From what it looks like, I'll have a job probably within a month," said Thomas Warren, who has been out of the Army since 2012. "I've done my schooling, I've done my time in the service. All I'm asking for is a little hand down and someone saying hey, I've got a job. And I'll get it done for you."
Most of the veterans were older than Warren, with many years back in civilian life. Tony Williamson left the army 30 years ago and has been unemployed for the past year.
"So far, by me coming here it's been real helpful," Williamson said. "I've run into a couple of good prospects."
The 85 companies set up behind tables ranged from the Norwich Fire Department to ESPN, from bus companies to insurance companies.