Sunday, January 21, 2018

See a female veteran as one of you

Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
January 21, 2018

When I was growing up getting sassy was something bad. I heard that remark from my Mom probably more than a thousand times. (Gee, I'm sure no one was shocked by that.)

It is defined as "Lively, bold, and full of spirit; cheeky." Safe bet there are times when you are feeling like you are the only one feeling miserable, it would be comforting to know someone else felt the same way. Makes it even better to know that feeling that way is not all there is. 

The best comedy shows we watch have something most of us go through and then spin it around to make us laugh. Seeing it in a different way, especially in a funny way, makes it seem less like a burden we'll never be free of, to something that is part of our past.

For some reason when I was channel surfing I thought about how few movies there are with female soldiers, or even veterans as the lead character. I thought about all the Civil War movies and how Dr. Mary Edwards Walker did not manage to deserve a movie script even though she is the only female to have received the Medal of Honor. Yes, the Medal of Honor.

I searched for more reminders of women who fought for this country, right along side of men, even though sometimes, they had no clue the soldier next to them was female.

"More than 400 women disguised themselves as men and fought in the Union and Confederate armies during the Civil War."

Most of the time when women are gathered at veterans events, the males are thanked for their service, but females are lucky if the same person acknowledges them with a simple "hello."

Keeping with slamming-shaming suicide awareness as fake news, when was the last time you saw any of them talking about female veteran suicides?

The Department of Veterans Affairs put out "Facts About Suicide Among Women Veterans" August 2017
"From 2001 through 2014, the suicide rate among women Veterans increased to a greater degree (62.4 percent) than the suicide rate among male Veterans (29.7 percent)."
As you just read, yet one more group that has been left out of all the "awareness" being picky on who they want you to care about. Most of the groups talk about OEF and OIF veterans, failing to mention that the largest group needing help are over the age of 50...older veterans waiting longer for help. I don't know when the last time I read anything about any awareness being raised for female veterans.

If you are a female veteran and found help to heal, please share it with other female veterans. PTSD does not just hit females like too many assume, with sexual assaults, but the same way males are hit by it...combat zones chaos. It can hit you as a nurse, as much as it can hit you as a truck driver. It can hit you even if you did not deploy overseas but did your duty at Dover or in any of the military hospitals. Only you can understand them and it is very unlikely you will minimize anything they try to open up about.

If you SEE a female veteran looking lost in a crowd, go over and ASK her where she served, or what branch, or anything that will let her know that someone just acknowledged she serve too. SPEAK about your own service and SHARE something about YOURSELF with a good attitude and let her find some hope in what you are standing as an example of as a survivor.

Females may be the smallest group of veterans in the country but you are worth a lot more attention than anyone gives you credit doing.

Delta Airlines wants proof your dog is good to fly

Good dog or bad dog Delta wants to know before you board
Associated Press
David Koenig
January 20, 2018
A rift has grown between disabled people who rely on trained service animals, usually dogs, and passengers with support or comfort animals, with many in the first group suspecting that those in the latter are just trying to avoid paying $125.

However, owners of comfort animals, including veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress syndrome, often say that they wouldn't be able to travel without their companion.

DALLAS - Delta Air Lines will soon require owners of service and support animals to provide more information before their animal can fly in the passenger cabin, including an assurance that it's trained to behave itself.

The airline says complaints about animals biting or urinating or defecating on planes have nearly doubled since 2016.

Starting March 1, Delta will require owners to show proof of their animal's health or vaccinations at least 48 hours before a flight.

Owners of psychiatric service animals and of those used for emotional support will need to sign a statement vouching that their animal can behave. But owners will be on the honor system - they won't have to show, for example, that their dog graduated from obedience school.
read more here

Considering you can buy a service dog vest at Walmart...

Two Fort Carson Soldiers killed in helicopter crash

Two Fort Carson soldiers killed in helicopter crash
KKTV 11 News
Spencer Wilson
January 20, 2018

FORT IRWIN, CA (KKTV) Fort Carson has confirmed that an Army AH64 Apache helicopter crashed about 1 a.m. Saturday during pre-deployment training operations at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, California.

Two 4th Infantry Division Soldiers were on board at the time of the accident. They died in the crash. Names and service information for those soldiers are being withheld pending next-of-kin notification.
read more here

Want to change the outcome on suicides? Then learn first!

Too many failed by what we failed to change
Combat PTSD Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
January 21, 2018

Veterans’ suicide prevention discussed at Carson City meeting, Nevada Appeal has managed to bring up something that too many others never took the time to know,
"While the number of suicides has focused on the younger veterans, Burns said there's been an uptick in the number of veterans from the Vietnam War era who are taking their lives. Now, after many of them had jobs, raised a family and made a life for themselves, they are retired, but the memories of a war that occurred 50 years ago are bubbling up again."
but then again, too few bothered to know enough to even wonder why. As bad as it is right now, if we do nothing, do not learn from what failed it will keep getting worse. 

We have commit ourselves to doing what worked, if not, it will be the same result when the OIF and OIF generation has been replaced on the attention scale by whatever group is sent to yet another war.

Keep in mind that the OEF and OIF veterans were "trained" in prevention, yet as the number of enlisted went down by the thousands, suicides did not drop accordingly. They still average to more than one a day.

Department of Defense Suicide Report
 2012, Active Duty 321, Reserves 204
2013 Active Duty 256, Reserves 220
2014 Active Duty 276, Reserves 170
2015 Active Duty 266, Reserves 214
2016 Active Duty 280, Reserves 203
2017 Active Duty 130, Reserves 116 for the first half of the year. Total has not been released yet.

This "training" did not work and the younger veterans committing suicide at triple their peer rate, along with the numbers you just read, prove what the DOD has failed to see.
In the last report, the number was back down to 20, but too few even know what data was missing from that report.

The number of veterans holding steady since 1999 prove that what everyone else is doing, from Congress to all the "awareness" people doing a lot of talking, failed. The worst thing with the numbers the VA knows about holding steady, is that the number of veterans alive in the country has dropped since then by about 5 million.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Hundreds of bikers took over roads in Florida...on charity ride!

Today, hundreds of bikers got together to ride from Seminole Harley Davidson in Sanford Florida, to Ace Cafe in downtown Orlando.
The honorees of this year’s run are U.S. Marine Sgt. Steve Tovet and U.S. Navy Corpsman HM1 Kelly Smith.


 If you could hear me screaming right now, your windows would break, much like hope is being shattered all over the country!

Out of Nebraska, The Grand Island Independent gave the headline to another stunt. Oh, no, not pushups, not running in shorts or jumping into freezing water. It isn't yet another run to nowhere with everyone smiling, pretending to be doing something meaningful other than contributing to the problem...along with groups who never seem to have to explain the lack of results, anymore than they have to explain what the money is for. Oh, no, this time it is getting a tattoo!

The worst part of all is that the "effort" started with a Vietnam veteran's adult child. I thought great, finally someone was making into a news report and actually addressing the largest group of veterans committing suicide. After all, 65% of the suicides the VA knows about are over the age of 50, and among that demographic, the largest group of them are Vietnam veterans. All that should really be important when this is supposed to be about saving lives. Right? Evidently not.
The event is personal for both Will and Jeri as Jeri’s father is a Vietnam War veteran and Will’s parents both served in the U.S. Air Force.
"Just knowing kind of the struggles my dad went through with his mental health and also being a member of the VFW here in town, I’ve seen kind of a disconnect with our community and that population," Jeri said. "So (we’re) just trying to bring more awareness to the population of veterans and active service men and women. ... If we can provide a safe place for them to come when they’re not feeling so well, that’s what our doors are open for."
It also must have not been important to mention who, or what, would be there when the veterans in crisis would walk through those doors. 

As for the quoted "22" there was this.

"It’s a number that is out there that is needing to come down," said Will Wilson, owner of Babalu’s. 

The problem with that is, that number came from the VA report with just 21 states contributing limited data. Combat PTSD Wounded Times, however, managed to actually prove that number is not even close. Not only do they have a lot of work to do to get that number below "22" but to even play catchup to the number the rest of us know. Much closer to over 70 a day, but even as much as we know, we will never know the true number. Too many variables all of these quoters of numbers should have known, if it really meant that much to them.

I had a conversation with a 33 year old Marine veteran yesterday. He said it has more to do with laziness. They spend so much time promoting what they want to do, they never seem to bother discovering what it needed, necessary, or even done before.

If you have a real desire to change the outcome, DO YOUR RESEARCH and STOP THE STUNTS!

The only number families care about is the 1 in their family.

But hey, get a tattoo carved into your body while more of those family members are getting a name carved into a headstone. That's ok, you can always show them the tattoo you got because you cared so much!

Vietnam veteran Charles Payne is a true child of the Sixties

Tracking the life of a free spirit
Sauk Valley
Andrea Mills
January 19, 2018

STERLING – Charles Payne is a true child of the Sixties: He’s a Vietnam veteran still struggling with the after-effects of the war, a multimedia artist, and a witch (of the white, or good, variety).

“A Vietnam veteran straightened me out. Survival guilt: If my buddies could come out of the grave, they’d kick my butt up between my shoulder blades for letting their deaths screw my head up. They didn’t die for that.”
It’s the latter two aspects of his life – the artistry and the spirituality – that have helped Payne cope the past 50 years with the former.

“I wasn’t wounded by bullets, but by Agent Orange,” the impish 73-year-old said. “And then here I am. Still plugging away. My eyes are deteriorating, but my spirit isn’t.”
The former California resident, who also battles PTSD, has been a free spirit all of his life, even before volunteering for the Army in October 1967.
read more here

North Ogden Utah without Mayor...he got deployed

Hundreds say goodbye to North Ogden mayor ahead of Afghanistan deployment
Rosie Nguyen
January 19, 2018

NORTH OGDEN (News4Utah) - Hundreds of residents lined the streets of North Ogden to show their appreciation and wave goodbye to Mayor Brent Taylor Friday morning.

North Ogden Police escorted Mayor Taylor and his family around town before he headed to the airport. The schools he stopped by included Bates Elementary, North Ogden Elementary, Green Acres Elementary, North Ogden Junior High, and Majestic Elementary.
Madilyn Erekson, a 5th grader at Bates Elementary got the chance to meet the mayor for a school project. She calls him a hero.

"I was happy for him, but I was kind of upset because we won't be able to see him for a year," said Madilyn.

One week after he was sworn into office for a second term, Mayor Taylor announced on Facebook Live that he would be training the Afghan Commando Battalion. City officials said this is the first known time in Utah history that a mayor deploys for wartime service.
read more here