Militarily Speaking Ep. 50 -Supporting Military and First Responders: Operation First Response with Peggy Baker

“Militarily Speaking” is a podcast produced by Armed Forces Bank that is dedicated to the military lifestyle and all the things that makes military community who they are.

We — with guests like you — will help the military community not only navigate their finances but also military life. We chat about both good and bad financial practices and provide some insight along the way. We’ll share strategies to help people get ahead, discuss military benefits that members should take advantage of, and more – all working towards the goal of helping people become more financially independent.

On the show, we’ll also preview and talk about how to take advantage of military specific services, such as loans and mortgages, and help members prepare for important milestones such as PCS moves and the transition to civilian life. Finally, at the end of every episode, we have a bit of fun with our Military Minute. That guessing-game segment features military history, hobbies, a bit of pop culture. Correct guesses by listeners could result in a donation to charity of individual’s choice.

Episode Show Notes:

Welcome to the "Militarily Speaking" podcast with Tom McLean and Jodi Vickery.

In this episode of “Militarily Speaking,” Tom, Jodi, and guest Peggy Baker, President and Founder of Operation First Response, discuss the incredible journey of this organization, its inspiring efforts in providing financial support to wounded military service members and their families, and the motivation behind their work.

“Militarily Speaking” is a podcast produced by Armed Forces Bank that is dedicated to the military lifestyle and all the things that makes the military community who they are.


Ep. 50 – Supporting Military and First Responders: Operation First Response with Peggy Baker


The conversation began with the hosts expressing their excitement for the 50th episode milestone, followed by a warm welcome to their guest, Peggy Baker. Peggy unveiled her inspiring journey which commenced when her son joined the United States Army in the wake of 9/11. Witnessing the sacrifices of these brave military men and women and experiencing their struggles firsthand moved her to establish Operation First Response. From that day till now, the organization has been walking hand-in-hand with military heroes and their families, providing support during their most challenging times.

Programs Within Operation First Response

As part of their endeavor to salute military heroes, the organization hosts numerous programs. One of the most valued programs is the financial assistance program that supports military families and first responders. Over the years, the organization has formed a safety net for these families by providing help in emergency situations such as car repairs or appliance replacements for families with fixed income.

Another significant undertaking is their training program offering specialized IT courses virtually. Recognizing the employment challenges that veterans often face, the organization offers these programs free of cost, underscoring the importance of community support and encouragement for the returning heroes.

The Kinds of Donations Operation First Response Accepts

Operation First Response indeed understands the power of kindness and community support. The organization openly accepts help in various forms beyond monetary contributions. They accept donations in the form of vehicles, boats, stocks, and securities, which then gets translated into financial means to provide support to struggling families. The organization also welcomes volunteers for events and fundraising activities.

Serving Those Who Serve

During this enlightening conversation, Peggy made it abundantly clear why she and her team continue to do what they do. The importance of conveying heartfelt gratitude to the selfless military men and women who serve our nation, and their families, remains at the heart of Operation First Response. Whether it's financial aid or a training program, the organization continually strives to be more than a band-aid but a beacon of hope for these heroes shedding light on their path towards a secure and stable life.

When asked about what she wants the listeners to remember, Peggy urged everyone to recognize our military and first responders as the best of us. Our support, she believes, can reassure them that they are never alone and that their sacrifices are never forgotten.


Military Minute

Jodi introduces the Military Minute segment of the show, beginning by closing out last episode’s Military Minute.

  • Last episode’s Military Minute: Who was the second most famous woman in America followed by First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt?
  • Answer: Betty Crocker
  • This week’s Military Minute question: Which country music artist recorded the song, Some Gave All, and what year was it released?
  • Watch for Facebook and Instagram posts about this episode.
  • Answer with the correct answer and you plus a charity of your choice can each win $50.
  • After a winning selection, Military Minute participants are eligible for another selection after 12 months.


Tom closes the episode by asking listeners to go to and subscribe to the show, as well as leave a rating and comment on your favorite podcast platform such as Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

 Join us to hear how to better navigate your finances, military life, and the crossroads of the two.