Thursday, March 22, 2018

Wounded warriors find healing the ancient way

It seems as if everyone has heard the term "Wounded Warrior."  

I've been using it since the early 80's because Native Americans have been using it long before I discovered the term while research PTSD. One of the reasons why I used Wounded Minds in the first PTSD video I did in 2006.

I didn't copyright it but they should have!

Veterans With PTSD Find Relief in Native American Rituals
Voice of America
Cecily Hilleary
March 22, 2018

Since ancient times, Native American and Alaskan Natives have held warriors in high esteem and have developed a wide variety of prayers, ceremonies and rituals to honor returning soldiers and ease them back into community life.

Sweat lodge constructed by veterans during a Veterans Community Response retreat, Flying B Ranch, Kamiah, Idaho. Courtesy: Michael Carroll.
“I wasn’t the kind of guy you’d want to meet in a dark alley.”

That’s how U.S. Army veteran Michael Carroll, 39, from Spokane, Wash., described himself after coming home in 2004 after serving 18 months in Iraq.

He was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and given an honorable discharge.

“The transition from military to civilian life was definitely unpleasant,” he said. “I was extremely temperamental and hostile, and I lashed out a lot. Anything could trigger me — sounds to smells to seeing trash on the side of the road,” a reminder of explosive devices used against coalition forces in the Iraq war.

Over the next few years, he underwent the standard treatment for PTSD — psychotherapy and medication — which he said did him more harm than good.
read more here

Driver dead: crashed Travis Air Force Base Gate

Driver dead after breaching gate at Travis Air Force Base
Air Force Times
By: Stephen Losey
March 22, 2018
Three C-17 Globemaster IIIs sit on the tarmac at Travis Air Force Base, Calif. A driver who breached the main gate at Travis and then crashed was pronounced dead at the scene Wednesday evening.
(Louis Briscese/Air Force)

A driver who breached the main gate at Travis Air Force Base in California and then crashed was pronounced dead at the scene Wednesday evening.

Travis officials said in a release posted online that there were no additional fatalities or injuries, and there are no current threats to the base or the community. The investigation is ongoing.

The base said that its first responders, including security forces, and emergency officials from nearby Fairfield responded after the driver “gained unauthorized access” to the main gate shortly before 7 p.m. The car crashed shortly afterward, Travis said.
read more here

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Vietnam Helicopter Pilot and Crewmember Monument

Dedication ceremony set for monument honoring Vietnam helicopter pilots, crews
Military Times
By: Charlsy Panzino
March 21, 2018

The war was known as the “helicopter war” because the United States relied heavily on the aircraft to transport troops and provide close-air support.
Retired Lt. Col. Forrest “Frosty” Price, a Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association member, stands with the Vietnam Helicopter Pilot and Crewmember Monument. (Courtesy photo)
Those who wish to honor the helicopter pilots and crew members killed in Vietnam can do so on April 18 at Arlington National Cemetery.

After four years, these service members will have their own monument at the Virginia cemetery.

The Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association spearheaded the effort, working with Arlington National Cemetery and Congress to get the monument approved.

At first, the cemetery was hesitant because of the ever-shrinking space for grave sites, but supporters of the monument wrote to Congress and gained attention. Eventually, a compromise was made, and the cemetery approved the monument.

The Vietnam Helicopter Pilot and Crewmember Monument will be placed in Section 35 along Memorial Drive, not far from the Tomb of the Unknowns. It honors the nearly 5,000 helicopter pilots and crew members who were killed during the Vietnam War.
read more here

Veteran Suicides: Making money or making a difference?

Who are you really helping?
Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
March 21, 2018

There is a huge disconnect between the military/veteran communities and the communities where they call home.

The good news is civilians want to help. The bad news is they still don't know what is really helpful, instead of what is popular. In this case, the proof of what civilians don't know, is worse than nothing.

$125,000 rip off
The scheme involved collecting donations for two fraudulent organizations, the “Wounded Warrior Fund” and the “Wounded Warrior Foundation” – both plays on the legitimate Florida-based Wounded Warrior Project, according to the indictment, unsealed Friday.
The article on Stars and Stripes had this other detail,
The four are also accused of getting free hotel rooms, gift cards and restaurant meals, ostensibly for veterans’ families. They are charged with defrauding more than 1,000 victims over six years, the indictment said.“Everything they did was for personal use,” Richard Ferretti, special agent in charge of the Louisville field office of the Secret Service, told Stars and Stripes. “No veteran’s family that we found as of yet has benefited from the money solicited.” 
And there was this guy, reported by ABC 10 News 

MIAMI - A U.S. Marine who worked under former Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado was arrested Wednesday after he and a friend were accused of stealing $300,000 of donated items meant to help military veterans in need.
And this one reported by Daytona Beach News Journal

An Ormond Beach man has been accused of running a sham veterans charity after investigators said he scammed several local businesses that had provided services for a benefit golf tournament headlined by a former NFL player. Christopher Blake, 46, faces a felony charge of organized scheme to defraud after he received donations and services under the guise of a charity called “Second Chance Veterans Foundation,” Volusia County sheriff’s detectives said.Blake held a late October golf tournament at DeBary Golf and Country Club where he brought in a friend, retired NFL football player Gerald Riggs, to be the star. But the golf course, a sign maker, a hotel and even Riggs were left empty-handed after Blake paid them with bad checks for their services or tried to skirt payment entirely, according to a charging affidavit. 
And then there are things like this reported by POLITICO

Veterans Charity Raises Millions to Help Those Who’ve Served. But Telemarketers Are Pocketing Most of It. Levite says he protested, but Hampton ignored him. He hired another telemarketer, Outreach Calling, to assist a related veterans nonprofit he runs out of the same office. This telemarketer — which the New York attorney general’s office says is run by a man they banned for life from fundraising in New York and remains under investigation — kept $9 out of every $10 raised.
This could go on and on, but you get the idea. Americans love our veterans but maybe we should love them a little less and stop long enough to check to see where the money is going before we donate. Are they really helping veterans or themselves?

After all, for all the money that went to people claiming to be helping veterans, had gone to groups actually making a difference, IT WOULD HAVE HELPED THE VETERANS NEEDING IT!

Veteran dead after standoff at Panera Bread

Gunman Dead As 5-Hour Standoff At Princeton Panera Bread Ends
The standoff lasted five hours on Tuesday afternoon. Schools were under shelter-in-place, and nearby buildings were evacuated.
By Anthony Bellano, Patch Staff
Mar 20, 2018
According to Planet Princeton, police reportedly found the gunman's car — a Ford Focus with Pennsylvania tags. Details about the car's location weren't immediately available. Sources told the website that the man was a veteran.

PRINCETON, NJ — A gunman is dead after a nearly 5-hour standoff at a Princeton Panera Bread Tuesday, ending an ordeal that led to evacuations at Princeton University and neighboring buildings as well as a shelter-in-place at nearby schools.

The state Attorney General's Office confirmed that the unidentified gunman was shot dead by police after hours of negotiations. The gunman has not been identified pending the notification of family members.

The Attorney General's Shooting Response Team is investigating the circumstances of the shooting.
read more here

Fort Stewart Soldier surrendered after standoff

Fort Stewart police respond after soldier barricades himself in on-post apartment
Army Times
By: Nicole Bauke
March 20, 2018

A Fort Stewart, Georgia, soldier barricaded himself with a weapon in his on-post apartment for three hours on Tuesday, according to a press release.

The incident happened about 11:20 a.m. on Courage Loop in Marne Point.

The soldier, who has not been identified at this time for privacy reasons, initially refused to comply with police commands, but he surrendered to military police almost three hours later.
read more here

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Stop stuffing what your service does to you

Stop stuffing what your service does to you
PTSD Patrol
Kathie Costos
March 20, 2018

If you made it your job to serve others, time to deal with it instead of stuffing it.

The only way to prevent PTSD is to stop all wars, crimes, fires, natural disasters and accidents. Think about that for a second. 

Now think about how you decided to make it your job...willingly putting your life on the line because all those things happen to people you don't even know.

Sure, you can understand when one of us has just been through something horrible and dealing with a lot. Why can't you understand when one of your own, or you, has to deal with a lot more because you face more of those times that could kill you?

While it may be difficult for the survivors, it is a lot hard for those we count on to help us become a survivor instead of victims.

Service members (including National Guard and Reservists) law enforcement, firefighters and emergency responders, face the same things the rest of us deal with but piled on top of that "everything else" are all the times you put your lives on the line. Even when you are not in an active situation, you are waiting for the next time. After all, that is what you get paid to do. Isn't it?

What you cannot forget, you stuff it to be able to just get on with your time off the job. The problem is, there is really no time you are totally off the job. You know when you are not on duty, someone else is.
read more here

VA employee wanted to help veterans with PTSD-until boyfriend killed her

Woman was on track to become licensed psychologist before boyfriend killed her, friends say
KSAT ABC 12 News
patty Santos
March 19, 2018

Santiago worked at the VA helping veterans. She was on a postdoctoral clinical fellowship in geropsychology at the South Texas Veterans Health Care System.
SAN ANTONIO - Tania Rendo Santiago had a way of connecting with people, her friends say.

Santiago's friend Kristina Arciniega said that's what drew her to the counseling psychologist. Arciniega said Santiago's personality is what helped her connect with her patients.

“She was there to give you great insight. She was also a friend,” Arciniega said. “She wasn't stuffy. She was well-rounded. She loved to walk with you, your dog and have fun and host people.”
When police arrived, officers said the gunman, Scott Caruso, 36, shot and killed himself. Friends said the two had been in a relationship.
read more here