Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Arkansas Suicide Prevention Hotline Passes House

Bill Instating Arkansas Suicide Prevention Hotline Passes House
Arkansas Matters
By: Jessi Turnure
Posted: Mar 21, 2017
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Right now... if you call the National Suicide Prevention hotline, you have no chance of speaking with someone in Arkansas.

We're one of two states without an in-state call center. A bill to change that passed in the House Tuesday afternoon.

The legislation calls on the Health Department to run a 24-hour call center that answers Arkansans' calls to the national hotline.

The Veteran's Coalition and Veteran's Mental Health Council brought the bill to Representative Bob Johnson, (D)-Jacksonville.

He says he's worked out the funding issues opponents have had concerns about.

The call center would cost nearly 700,000 dollars a year to run and evaluate.

Rep. Johnson says the Health Department has money to start program, and once it's up and running, it'll qualify for federal dollars.
read more here

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Being Married to PTSD Came with Package Deal--Deal With It and Learn

This was a letter to 

Ms. Vicki: Is PTSD a Forgotten Problem?

"I am married to an Air Force officer who has been active for 15 years. He was diagnosed with PTSD after his last deployment in 2010. I am very disappointed because people don't talk about PTSD anymore. I feel that it's a forgotten illness because there is a draw down of forces and the wars are over....I don't think any of the professionals understand that I am suffering, too. What about the wives or other spouses? What can I do to try and make my marriage last and stand the test of time?"
Honestly, all I can think about is that with all the instant access to what this generation has, how can they know so little? After all, we learned, found support and when we couldn't we created the support for others. We did it without the internet. Shocking for the younger generation, I know, but life did happen before we even had cellphones.

I am sure you remember those days. Having to find a payphone when you were going to be late or needed directions. When you took long rides and actually listened to the radio or a cassette tape, instead of hearing the chimes of a new update about what someone posted on Facebook or Tweet from a friend...or the President. The times when we actually sat and talked over coffee instead of taking selfies.

Sometimes I wonder if the younger spouses think we were always this old! I met my husband when I was just 23! Good Lord! I am old! But it has been one hell of an experience being married this long. Some of it sucked. Most of it, after we left the doorway of hell, has left me wanting to see others make it this long. It was so worth the effort!

Maybe they are used to it...everything coming easy. After all, if they don't find the answers they need in their circle of linkers to their accounts, it must not exist! God forbid they do something like a Google search when we actually had to get into our cars and drive to the library. I don't know about you, but being an Army brat, I had to know what I was getting into. I read clinical books with a dictionary to understand what Vietnam did to my then boyfriend. All they have to do is sit with their laptops in their p-js and get all the answers they need.

So why don't they? Why haven't they discovered that none of this is easy and that is why their lives are a lot harder than they need to be?

Because it is hard work and far from something that can be reduced down to 140 characters. If they really want to save their marriages, or save the lives of their husbands, they need to actually be willing to fight for them.

One of the groups I belong to started just as long ago working on PTSD and offering support in tiny groups for veterans and families. Check out Point Man International Ministries and see what I mean. If you want an eyeopener on what was going on back before the flood (Yes, Noah) then discover what we knew back in the 80's when the best researchers started out and we found our own way our of the abyss.

Monday, March 20, 2017

84 Year old Veteran Evicted--Community Stepped Up!

Groups step in to help 84-year-old Rock Hill veteran who faced evictions
Andrews Dys
March 20, 2017

The veteran told police money was missing from his bank accounts, a bank card had been stolen, and money from benefits that he had for rent and utilities was missing.
“The police helped him and he may have been swindled out of his money,” Guest said. “There were some choice words used for someone ... who would take an elderly veteran’s money. You can’t print those words in the newspaper.”

Read more here:

Veterans services and veterans advocacy groups worked Monday to get help for an 84-year-old veteran who had faced eviction and homelessness.
The Rock Hill chapter of Rolling Thunder, a veterans advocacy group, had $500 in gift cards and cash for the veteran, and was organizing more to help the man long-term.

The veteran faced homelessness last week in sub freezing temperatures, had it not been for some fast-acting law enforcement officers.

And as people mobilized to help him, some of the veteran’s belongings were thrown in a trash container and hauled away Monday from the house where he lived on Eden Terrace, across the street from Winthrop Coliseum. Court records show the eviction was legal, even if one of the people affected was “too frail to be put out into the cold,” as police put it.

“I drove by the house last week and saw all the stuff thrown in a heap outside and like anybody else, I didn’t know what happened until I read it in The Herald,” said Al Guest, president of Rock Hill’s Rolling Thunder chapter and a Vietnam War combat veteran. “Then when I read that he was a veteran and evicted, and could have frozen outside, I was upset.”
The story published in The Herald spread through social media and has been shared and commented on hundreds of times.
read more here

US Soldier Killed in Germany Car Crash

Soldier killed in car accident when driver raced MP
Published: March 20, 2017

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — Spc. Tyler Vaughan, a 22-year-old soldier stationed in Vilseck, Germany, was killed Saturday in a car accident near the Grafenwoehr Training Area, the military said.
A 22-year-old soldier stationed in Vilseck, Germany, was killed Saturday, March 18, 2017, in a car accident near the Grafenwoehr Training Area. Two other soldiers were seriously injured and the driver of the car, who tested positive for alcohol, suffered minor injuries. COURTESY OF THE FREIHUNG FIRE DEPARTMENT
Vaughan, who served with the U.S. Army’s 2nd Cavalry Regiment as a fire team leader, was a passenger in a vehicle that veered off the road and rolled into a tree near the Grafenwoehr main gate, German media reported. Two other soldiers, 26 and 27 years old, were seriously injured.
read more here

Vietnam Veteran's Widow Lost Husband to Suicide and May Lose Home

Boulder Creek widow of U.S. veteran suicide struggles to carry on
Santa Cruz Sentinel
By Ryan Masters,
POSTED: 03/17/17
Hutchinson detailed the horrors of the experience in a written account submitted to the VA before his death. He described the sights and sounds, the constant fear — how it felt to carry armloads of body parts; to x-ray badly-wounded men; to treat crippled and maimed Vietnamese children; to helplessly sit through mortar attacks; to watch men die.
Bernetta Hutchinson lost her U.S. veteran husband when he killed himself in 2014. Now she may also lose their Boulder Creek-area home. (Dan Coyro -- Santa Cruz Sentinel) Bernetta Hutchinson lost her U.S. veteran husband when he killed himself in 2014. Now she may also lose their Boulder Creek-area home. (Dan Coyro -- Santa Cruz Sentinel) 
BOULDER CREEK  On the morning of Oct. 24, 2014, Bernetta Hutchinson woke up in the Forest Springs neighborhood home she shared with her husband Terry. Wandering sleepily out to the living room, she found a note on the table. It began, “Bernetta, I am sorry. Call the VA.”

As she finished the short note, she went to their grown daughter’s bedroom, fell to her knees and prayed she was misinterpreting the suicide note; that somehow her husband was still alive.

And then, Hutchinson said, God guided her out the door and 50 yards into the redwood forest behind their home where she found her husband of 29 years, 7 months seated against a tree with his head bowed.

The 67-year-old Vietnam Veteran had shot and killed himself with a Glock handgun, becoming another casualty of the United States’ ongoing inability to heal its warriors after they return from the battlefield.

Kathie Dicesare, who runs the Wounded Times web blog and has been working on PTSD since 1982, said the VA reported 20 veteran suicides a day in 1999 — the exact same number of veteran suicides a day in 2016.

“In the 2000 Census, there were 26.4 million veterans; in 2014, there were 21,369,602. That’s the same number of reported suicides despite 5 million less veterans,” said Dicesare.
read more here

(Yes, that is me quoted.)