Jeff is a veteran of the Irish Permanent Defence Force (PDF) having joined in 1985 and retired after 21 years’ service in 2006. During his time with the PDF, Jeff participated in sports and featured at various times for the army hurling, football, and soccer and tug of war sides.

Like many soldiers, Jeff harboured a great respect for the Army Ranger Wing (ARW), a very small elite unit of Special Forces soldiers. Only candidates who successfully complete a notoriously gruelling one month selection course are considered for entry to the ARW and 90% of all candidates commencing the course fail to make the grade.