Air Force veteran uses life experiences in his work as a sign language interpreter

Life has many paths to choose from, and the one chosen may lead to the right destination even if there are pit stops on the way.

Kevin Yarbrough, the assistant and interpreter of Disability Support Services, has had a couple of pit stop throughout his life.

“I am originally from North Carolina where I went to a junior college with the ambitions to become a park ranger,” Yarbrough said.

Yarbrough decided to take a break from college when he served in the Air Force.

“Kevin used to be a master sergeant in the Air Force,” James Miller, the dean of students, said.

Yarbrough retired after serving in the Air Force for 22 years.

Kevin Yarbrough loves fly fishing in his own time and even ties his own flies. Courtesy

“I went into the Air Force to go back to school, but the Air Force kind of suited me, so 22 years of that and I retired out of Cheyenne,” Yarbrough said.

Now Yarbrough is working as the assistant for DSS as a sign language interpreter, he is the advisor for student veterans, and he makes sure students get the help they need.

“Kevin makes sure students are getting the accommodations they need for their classes, he speaks sign language and he is an important part of the DSS office,” Miller said.

Yarbrough came straight into DSS with background in sign language interpretation, which he learned at a young age with a deaf father.

“I never really expected this is what I would be doing, but it’s how it worked out,” Yarbrough said.

Yarbrough has been working for DSS for nine years.

Being a DSS assistant is not everything Yarbrough does. He has many hobbies outside the office. Yarbrough said he loves to be outside, whether it is going on wilderness trips with canoes or landscaping on his property.

“I love fishing, fly fishing and tying flies,” he said. “I have been to the boundary waters of Minnesota where I did some wilderness trips with canoes and one of my big releases is landscaping, dinking around on my property, planting trees and shrubs. It is huge to me being outdoors.”

Yarbrough also works with student veterans, connecting them with resources off campus. He has a leadership role in an organization called Healing Waters for retired veterans.

“Kevin has a leadership role in this organization,” Miller said. “He teaches all veterans how to fly fish and how to tie flies.”

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