Iron Mountain’s flexibility and support are key for this military mom

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Jackie Melendrez, wife of a Marine and the mother of two service members, knows about the demands of military life. For Iron Mountain, going the extra mile to give the routing all-star the work/life balance she needs was a no brainer.

(Courtesy of Jackie Melendrez)

Editor's Note: The following story highlights a veteran at Iron Mountain. Committed to including talented members of the military community in its workplace, Iron Mountain is a client of Hirepurpose, a Task & Purpose sister company. Learn more here.

Jackie Melendrez couldn't be prouder of her husband, her sons, and the fact that she works for Iron Mountain. This regional router has been a Mountaineer since 2017, and says the support she receives as a military spouse and mother is unparalleled.


Jackie's husband Jesus has been a Marine since 1998, setting a precedent in the Melendrez family for serving the nation. Two of their three sons are in the military: One is a Marine and the other is in the Navy. While the demands of a military life means relocating frequently, Jackie has found a permanent home at Iron Mountain, thanks to its flexibility and understanding of her family's situation. While she's currently based in Yuma, Arizona, where her husband is stationed, she remotely dispatches and manages trucking routes in Las Vegas, San Diego, Phoenix, and Salt Lake City markets.

When Jesus was originally reassigned to Yuma from San Diego, Jackie thought she'd have to leave the company; there are no Iron Mountain facilities in the area. It was a difficult reality for her because she loves her job.

However, Iron Mountain wasn't willing to let her go. Her supervisor took it upon himself to email Jackie's husband to let him know they'd take care of them. To keep her on the team, her managers came together, created a plan, and allocated the resources for her to work remotely.

"They really do care about military families, because they say, 'Just because her husband is relocating, it's not fair that she has to let go of what she's passionate about,'" she says. "That really meant a lot to me and my family."

Jackie has moved up the ranks during her time at Iron Mountain, driven by her passion for her job and its team culture. While she's excited about what lies ahead, being able to pass on her knowledge and contribute to the tight-knit family environment is what she's looking forward to the most.

"It gives me the opportunity to be a mentor," she says. "I'm out here training employees, and I just like the pleasure of making someone's day easier."

Although she works remotely, Jackie still feels like a connected team member. She talks to her colleagues every day, and travels to each market on a regular basis. For Jackie, her team is a family where everyone helps each other be successful.

"It encourages me to keep moving forward and push because I feel like the support is there," she explains. "They say, 'You know what, Jackie, there's a future for you here.'"

Jackie recalls her son's graduation from Marine boot camp as another example of how supportive the company has been. She had just started working for Iron Mountain a few weeks before and didn't have the vacation time accrued to make it to the ceremony in Florida. The day before the event, her manager found out about the graduation and made sure she could go.

Within hours, she was on a plane to Virginia to see her son follow in his father's footsteps. For Jackie, that moment sums up why she loves Iron Mountain and values the fact that many of her managers have military backgrounds.

"I'm emotional, because I just felt like Iron Mountain cared about my family and about me being happy," she says. "They know what they went through and they use that to connect to the rest of the team, and it makes us stronger as a company that we're all united."

This post is sponsored by Iron Mountain

The video opens innocently enough. A bell sounds as we gaze onto a U.S. Navy frigate, safely docked at port at Naval Base San Diego. A cadre of sailors, dressed in "crackerjack" style enlisted dress uniforms and hauling duffel bags over their shoulders, stride up a gangplank aboard the vessel. The officer on deck greets them with a blast of a boatswain's call. It could be the opening scene of a recruitment video for the greatest naval force on the planet.

Then the rhythmic clapping begins.

This is no recruitment video. It's 'In The Navy,' the legendary 1979 hit from disco queens The Village People, shot aboard the very real Knox-class USS Reasoner (FF-1063) frigate. And one of those five Navy sailors who strode up that gangplank during filming was Ronald Beck, at the time a legal yeoman and witness to one of the strangest collisions between the U.S. military and pop culture of the 20th century.

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"Of the 11,000 or so detainees that were imprisoned in northeast Syria, we've only had reports that a little more than a hundred have escaped," Esper said, adding that the Syrian Democratic Forces were continuing to guard prisons, and the Pentagon had not "seen this big prison break that we all expected."



Well, I feel better. How about you?

On Wednesday, the top U.S. envoy in charge of the global coalition to defeat ISIS said much the same, while adding another cherry on top: The United States has no idea where those 100+ fighters went.

"We do not know where they are," James Jeffrey told members of Congress of the 100+ escaped detainees. ISIS has about 18,000 "members" left in Iraq and Syria, according to recent Pentagon estimates.

A senior administration official told reporters on Wednesday the White House's understanding is that the SDF continues to keep the "vast majority" of ISIS fighters under "lock and key."

"It's obviously a fluid situation on the ground that we're monitoring closely," the official said, adding that released fighters will be "hunted down and recaptured." The official said it was Turkey's responsibility to do so.

President Trump expressed optimism on Wednesday about what was happening on the ground in northeast Syria, when he announced that a ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds was expected to be made permanent.

"Turkey, Syria, and all forms of the Kurds have been fighting for centuries," Trump said. "We have done them a great service and we've done a great job for all of them — and now we're getting out."

The president boasted that the U.S.-brokered ceasefire had saved the lives of tens of thousands of Kurds "without spilling one drop of American blood."

Trump said that "small number of U.S. troops" would remain in Syria to protect oilfields.


Kade Kurita (U.S. Army photo(

Kade Kurita, the 20-year-old West Point cadet who had been missing since Friday evening, was found dead on Tuesday night, the U.S. Military Academy announced early Wednesday morning.

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Editor's Note: This article by Matthew Cox originally appeared on Military.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

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Army officials, as well as the companies in competition, have been guarded about specific details, but the end result will equip combat squads with weapons that fire a specially designed 6.8mm projectile, capable of penetrating enemy body armor at ranges well beyond the current M855A1 5.56mm round.

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The Minot Air Force Base main gate (U.S. Air Force photo)

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