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Combat Story

Aug 12, 2023

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Today we hear the Combat Story of a long time Marine and Special Operator Andy Milburn who, after retiring from 31 years of service, decided to then go to Ukraine to support their fight against the Russians through what he aptly named the Mozart Group. 

Andy has a knack for getting close to the action that started long before he became a Marine. Growing up in the UK, Andy found himself detained momentarily in Iran before meeting a group of Marine Security Guards in Pakistan that changed his career path from lawyer to Marine. He was part of operations in Somalia, Iraq (from the invasion to counter-ISIS operations), Afghanistan, and Libya.

He commanded at multiple levels, including the first ever O-6 level Special Operations Task Force while battling ISIS in Iraq. He’s battled some of the darkest moments of the trauma and grief that come from combat and loss but continues to give back, to include the time he spent in Ukraine with the Mozart Group.

Andy’s written a book about his time in service, When The Tempest Gathers, that helps clearly explain how he might end up in Ukraine after retiring and has been published in multiple journals, including The Atlantic and Task and Purpose. He and his Mozart Group have been featured in the New York Times and countless other news outlets.

We need to say a special thanks to our brothers at the Team House for making this interview happen and  I hope you enjoy this story of sacrifice and selflessness from a lifelong Marine as much as I did.


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- Intro Song: Sport Rock from Audio Jungle
Find Andy Online:
- When The Tempest Gathers:
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- Instagram @milburnar
Show Notes:
00:00 - Intro 
00:47 - Guest Introduction (Andy Milburn)
02:15 - Interview begins
03:00 - Marine House in Islamabad
11:26 - From Islamabad to Australia
16:30 - Family's reaction to dangerous trip
20:15 - Rocket Money
24:54 - Isolation of command 
27:22 - Starting as a Private at Paris Island
32:23 - Hollywood Marines
34:23 - Path to Mogadishu
40:41 - First time in combat
52:41 - Being in Command
55:30 - Challenging battles
01:07:57 - Loss during Command
01:15:20 - Time in Libya
01:35:44 - Counter-ISIS
01:47:04 - Perseverance in traumatic times
01:56:05 - Similar role in the future
01:57:30 - Mental health experiences
02:02:12 - Sentimental Items
02:07:52 - Would you do it again
02:10:09 -  Listener comments and shout outs