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Salute Our Troops | John Latham helps mentor young SEAL recruits

John Latham

Every month we like to salute our troops by recognizing individuals in our community who go the extra mile to make our community great.

Our nominee this time, John Latham , served in the U.S Navy -- in fact, he was part of the Navy's "Sea, Air, and Land" special forces -- also known as Navy SEALs. Latham is tough as nails, but has a heart of gold -- and these days he spends much of his time serving others right here in the Las Vegas community.

"I was a Southern California surfer,” said Latham. “I surfed with two guys that had short hair in Huntington Beach in 1975. They were great watermen, and they said, if you join the Navy and become a SEAL, you get to surf all around the world."

That's pretty much all it took for Latham. For a man who loved the ocean and being in the water, becoming a Navy SEAL seemed like a perfect fit. Though he couldn't discuss with us any of his secret missions, he did say his service took him around the world, and into some pretty difficult spots. But he was always surrounded by the best.

Today, he helps mentor young SEAL recruits.

"I've been mentoring young men here in the Vegas Valley for quite a few years, probably 6 years now,” Latham said.

Latham’s love for the military also has him volunteering with non-profit groups, delivering turkey to Nellis troops on Thanksgiving, and much more.

"The foundations that he's working with now, the Shane Patton Foundation and That Others May Live, are near and dear to his heart,” said Kathleen Stephens

Shane Patton was a navy SEAL killed in action. His father, also a SEAL, served with Latham.

"Shane and his dad are both from Boulder City. We have a scholarship foundation, and we've been raising money now to build a statue and memorial to Shane in Boulder City,” said Latham.

Latham has already helped raise more than $300,000 -- and just like a SEAL, he says they're not finished yet.

We're definitely fortunate to have john here in Las Vegas.

If you know a military member who goes above and beyond in our community, they can be active or veteran, we'd like to recognize them. Click here to submit a nomination.

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