On September 11, 2001, Private Daniel Waite was in boot camp at Fort Benning, Georgia. It was a day that would change the path of his military career. After boot camp, Private Waite was based in Hawaii with 2-35 Cacti, an Infantry Unit that was gearing up for the Middle East. For the next three years Waite readied up the best way he knew how, excelling at schools that would equip him for war. First, Ranger School, where he was tabbed in July 2003. Next up Airborne School, earning him the elite title, Airborne Ranger. The next year was spent training for war, and in early 2004 Sgt. Waite deployed to Afghanistan with 2-35 and his Scout Unit. While in Afghanistan, Sgt. Waite worked with his team to track down enemy targets in the mountain villages and cities of Afghanistan, completing dozens of successful missions in their year-long deployment.
Upon returning from Afghanistan, Sgt. Waite was honorably discharged from Active Duty, entering the Individual Ready Reserve, or IRR. He went to college, started a family, and made his best go at civilian life. All along he missed the military, with its sense of purpose and brotherhood. In November 2006, Sgt. Waite was recalled to Active Duty. It was a relief for him, as he felt he was his best self as a soldier. In January 2007, Sgt. Waite deployed to Iraq, along with 14 other IRR soldiers, attached to a National Guard unit out of Arkansas to complete convoy security. While in Iraq, combat injuries sent Sgt. Waite to a military hospital in Landstuhl, Germany, then to Walter Reed Army Medical Center outside Washington, D.C. He spent his time there recovering from TBI and PTSD and talking to other injured soldiers about hunting and fishing back in Maine. This is where the dream of Operation ReBoot Outdoors was born. Finally, 12 years after the dream began, Waite became a Registered Maine Guide and brought it to life in 2019 with the first official Missions getting underway.
Mike Capponi grew up in Fairfield, Maine and graduated from Lawrence High School. He attended Unity College where he earned a bachelors degree in Conservation Law Enforcement. He enlisted into the Army National Guard as a Military Police Officer and is currently on a tour as the Waterville Recruiting Station Team Leader. He currently resides in Belgrade Maine with his wife Mikaela. Mike grew up fishing the Rangeley Lakes region as well as the Belgrade Lakes region. As a teenager, he started hunting ducks, deer, and turkey as well. Mike enjoys sharing his passions with veterans and LEO’s all across Maine. Mike will be getting his fishing guides license and is honored to spend his time with men and women of the armed forces, and the Operation Reboot Outdoors Team.
Jake Beland is a born and raised Mainer and lives in Augusta, Maine. He spent 3 years at Unity College studying Wildlife & Fisheries Management. He got his Associates degree in Precision Machining Technology from KVCC, and is a Machinist at KV Tooling Systems in Augusta. He has been hunting and fishing since he could walk and the Maine wildlife and outdoors have always been his passion. He spends any spare time he has in the woods or on the lakes and rivers trolling, fly fishing, ice fishing, trapping, and hunting big and small game.
Jake has always enjoyed bringing people with him to enjoy his passions and introducing new outdoorsman to the outdoors, will be getting his hunting and fishing guide license. Jake has not served in the military himself, but he has many friends and family members who have served in the military or in law enforcement and has always had great respect and gratitude for them. He began volunteering for outdoors based veteran programs and found that giving back to the men and woman of the armed forces to be one of the most enjoyable and rewarding things he has ever done. Jake is very excited and honored to be a part of the Operation Reboot Outdoors team, and is looking forward to providing fun and memorable experiences in the Maine outdoors to the people who deserve it most!
Abraham Bradeen, a.k.a. Polar Bear, grew in the small town of Carthage, Maine. He graduated from Dirigo High School in 2001 and pursued a career at Irving Forest Products in Dixfield, Maine. Growing up, Abraham was exposed to the outdoors at a very young age. His Father a local logger and several other mentors showed him the woods and the water. He has been in the woods and on the water ever since. Abraham takes great pride in sharing the outdoors with others. Before Reboot, he often shared his time with anybody who wanted help. Abraham has mentored several youths to be very successful in the woods and the water over the years. He has an old soul and is easy to get along with and is always willing to listen as much as give. Abraham’s favorite time of the year is moose season. Abraham is one of the top moose callers in Maine and often competes in the yearly competition at the Maine Moose Lottery. Abraham shares his love for chasing the large mammal with his family, Sherman the brother of Abraham, also an outstanding woodsman. They often pair up to make a team, to chase the large mammal. Together there are like a finely tuned machine. They have put several hunters on bulls that push the 60” mark.
Abraham will be pursuing his Fishing Guides license as soon as the state gets back up and running full steam. Abraham may not be a veteran but shares all the same goals of all the others involved. He often says that ReBoot has changed his life in many ways. He states often that ,” it has made him realize it is the simple things in life that matter the most”.
Nicole and Dan have been married since 2004 but have been friends since they met in the fifth grade. The organization is run out of Base Camp Turner, their home in Turner, Maine.
Nicole does a little bit of everything for Operation ReBoot Outdoors. Fundraising, house keeping, head chef, event coordinating, shipping, receiving... she wears a few different hats for the organization. If you reach out to ReBoot, it will most likely be Nicole who responds. If you order gear, it was packed and shipped by Nicole. If you eat a breakfast sandwich on a trip, she probably made it.
If Jill-of-all-trades was a title, that would be her title. Instead, we call her the Fundraising Director.
I served in the United States Army until 2016, when I suffered life-altering injuries. Before I found Operation ReBoot Outdoors, I spent my days depressed, in and out of the hospital for some pretty severe mental health issues.
If Dan at ReBoot didn’t reach out to me, I can truly say I would have been one of the 22. For those of you who don’t know, 22 Veterans a day take their own lives. My ReBoot Missions have changed the way I look at life; words cannot explain how truly I feel getting out in the woods again. It’s not as easy as it used to be because of my physical disabilities, but with ReBoot, we make it work. Just thinking about everything that I have done with ReBoot brings tears to my eyes. And it’s not just about my time with ReBoot; seeing all the veterans smile with joy and find life again and not give up, is the best feeling in the world.
I now give back to ReBoot, volunteering as a videographer and YouTube coordinator.