Stuart Allen Beckley, a retired lieutenant colonel, restored his own sense of honor by honoring comrades in arms who died in Indochina. His monument on a remote ridgetop in in Colorado, was largely unknown until a group of bikers found it recently and posted this image on YouTube.
Recent studies show that war correspondents and photojournalists covering combat may have five times the normal rate of PTSD. Some national and international news organizations are now offering counseling to employees who are having trouble processing what they've seen on the job.
Kewon Potts, a Navy veteran, was one of 25-plus vets being given new suits, dress shirts and ties this month to wear to job interviews. The Save-a-Suit foundation and its founder, Scott Sokolowski, believe it's important to dress for success because it improves the interviewer's critical first impression and builds the vets' confidence.
My friend and colleague Charlotte Porter finally has written about how devastated she was after living through Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana. It's a reminder that journalists are humans who are affected by natural disasters. News organizations need to provide counseling, as needed, for their war correspondents and journalists covering natural disasters.
Scientists at UCLA have been studying the brains of retired football players to determine what types of brain damage are caused by repeated concussions, and new technologies are allowing them to examine living brains. The next step will involve combat vets to see how they differ from NFL players and from Alzheimer's victims.
Ever wonder what the VA is saying behind your back? Charles Gatlin did. So he and his wife requested—and received—hundreds of pages of emails that testify to a growing rift between a vet and the agency designated to serve him.
A VA appeals panel has ordered a full neuropsychological workup for a former Army captain, Charles Gatlin, who challenged his TBI disability rating on the grounds that the VA's RBANS screening test wasn't capable of measuring the brain injury he suffered from a car bomb in Iraq. It's a ruling with implications for all vets, but the VA says its policy won't change.
Dr. Roger Jahnke has been training instructors throughout the VA in a version of the ancient Asian discipline that he calls Tai Chi Easy. It accommodates all vets, including the disabled, by allowing them to practice it standing, sitting or lying down. Tai Chi promotes relaxation by adjusting body movements, slowing breathing and focusing the mind on the moment.
Kandyce Powell and her colleagues at the Maine State Prison have put together a remarkable program to help incarcerated vets dump their emotional baggage in their waning days. It validates vets who have been unable to discuss what they did to others in combat. But helping their fellow inmates also turns out to be hugely therapeutic for the inmate hospice volunteers.
Alcohol is so powerful that it can lead people down a lonely path to death. Our son-in-law had everything to live for, but chose that lonely path instead. So I've been asking myself why some people choose to snatch defeat from the very jaws of victory. And I'm sorry to say that I don't have a very good answer.
Former Army Capt. Charles Gatlin and his wife, Ariana Del Negro, have been battling the VA over what they believe to be an arbitrary change in his evaluation for traumatic brain injury. A state licensing board agreed with them two months ago and directed the state-licensed psychologist working for the VA to change his assessment. He did, but the VA refused his change.
At 14 years old, Jack van Vuuren strangled a Nazi soldier, then fled occupied Holland to join the Allied Forces during WWII. But he suffered from untreated PTSD all his adult life. Now his daughter, Karen van Vuuren, explores spiritual injuries post-combat in a new documentary film. She says that PTSD can't be healed without forgiveness and atonement.