PART 2 – WORDS FROM OUR SOLDIERS AND A PLEA TO OUR COMMUNITY AND THE GOVERNMENT
We continue this article series from ‘The Bay Area ‘Salute the Troops’’ with a few words from 2nd Lieutenant Pasin and Houston along with a plea to the community and government officials. We here at the Bay Area praise their efforts by giving back. Our service men and women have sacrificed both life and limb for this Country’s safety. We want to THANK YOU and your families for such a sacrifice.
A Word From Our Soldiers:
‘I appreciate the support of the community for veterans. To have veterans come back to a supportive environment throughout the various locations have been good.’
To Government Officials and the Community:
‘One concern I have is how the community will be able to handle post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). I don’t know if the people truly understand what it is and how they can help. Soldiers coming back with PTSD are often misunderstood.
I have had a friend who was an Iraq War Veteran who attempted suicide twice due to PTSD. PTSD is exhibited in various forms from problems with anger to the severe end of those with hallucinations. I truly believe the community wants to help and with education will make a significant positive difference with those who have served.
I’ve been thinking about the Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training Course (ASIST) and the impact it has on course students and even my life too. I get so elated when I see people learn skills that will help them save one’s life. As a facilitator I am amazed that I have the honor to help students, or as we call them in the class “Caregivers”, learn new theories that might be immensely hard to understand. Having friends that recently attempted suicide, my duty is more than just a job it’s a mission to build a better community that can help those who struggle with suicidal thoughts.
The VA Chaplains that we had in our course are a part of a healthcare system that serves 600,000 patients annually. I’m really amazed that what I do has that great of impact on the lives of those around me. Something really needs to be done in educating the community when our soldiers return home. Our soldiers need help to get back on their feet mentally, spiritually, physically and financially.’
*He serves as a Suicide Intervention Trainer through the ASIST (Applied Suicide Intervention Skills Training) Program which intervenes with persons at risk suicide. He taught the ASIST Program to several: Soldiers and co-facilitated a course with VA Chaplains, USMC Social Workers, a DoD Military Life Consultant, an Air Guard Airman and Soldiers Civilian Employees from the U.S. Army Reserve. For more information about the ASIST Program, click here http://www.livingworks.net.
‘I will say that the soldiers, marines, airmen, and sailors must always fight two wars, the war in foreign lands and the war at home. Any solider will tell you that without support from the rear we can’t win. It is during these times after the war has ended abroad, that we must come home and fight again. Not a fight of violence or death but one of survival, a fight for a life.
A life that will allow us to serve once again our country, our community and our family. We are disciplined, trained, and ready for whatever challenge you may place upon us, yet we cannot do it without your support. Provide the same if not more support that you gave while we were away. Provide in such a way that we will be successful and complete our new mission, a mission that is for the betterment of all.
We ask that you look to us as allies, friends, and brothers/sisters and not as beggars or handouts. We can, have, and will continue to sacrifice ourselves for you, can you say the same? I close with this thought and I want those who read this to remember. Somewhere in the past a soldier gave to you so that you can have a choice. I ask that you now choose to give in return.’
Next, we will continue the article series with a few words from Timothy Woods, a former soldier and devout advocate for Veteran-Owned (VOSB) and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSB). To see previous articles on this series visit Face 4Ward ‘Salute the Troops’ with business (Part 1).
Let’s thank 2nd Lieutenant Pasin and Houston for not only their thoughts and advice for this article but their years of service for our Country. Soldiers we ‘Salute’ you.
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