GIVING BACK – AS PART OF MY RECOVERY, I FELT THE NEED TO DO SOMETHING….VETERAN VOYAGE 360
On March 5th I launch on a 4 month long Stand up Paddleboard world distance record of 3500 miles to raise awareness and resources for Veteran TBI and PTSD treatment. This is part of Veteran Voyage 360. And then, in January 2017 I will attempt a solo circumnavigation of the globe by human powered row boat nonstop and unsupported.
Veteran Voyage 360 represents the longest journey that a soldier takes as he or she separates from the military after service in combat, and transitions into civilian life. Regardless of the length of service, whether 4 years or 24 years, returning to civilian life can be a difficult struggle, and especially for those suffering from the physical and psychological wounds of war. It can become very similar to being alone at sea, and thrown about by the wind and waves.
• We have to do more for our Veterans – Like many, I was given a diagnosis of TBI and PTSD, and placed on half a dozen or more prescription medications with no real long term prognosis or positive outcome. This caused more harm than good, and contributed to me nearly becoming part of the 22 veteran/day suicide statistic.
• I’m not just an advocate, I’m a wounded warrior from the special operations community that believes we can do more; I am an example of the progress. I am here to raise awareness that there are positive things that can be done, other state of the art modalities and treatments.
• The NFL has done an amazing job at addressing head injury and the resulting problems. How do we create the same level of awareness, priority, and resourcing for US Military and Veteran TBI and Polytrauma as there is on this issue for the NFL and other professional sports?
MY OBJECTIVE and PURPOSE:
1. My goal is 7,500 former and active Special Operations Members treated. Raise the funds required for every Special Operations soldier who needs it to receive the same level of care as me. – the Brain Treatment Center, the Carrick Brain Center, Millennium Health Center, etc
2. Increase availability of functional medicine modalities that extend the soldiers performance, career and life. Do this during and post career.
3. Increased investment in state of the art protective equipment that will drastically increase soldier survivability (Non Newtonian compound protective gear, elastomeric materials and coatings, etc…)
THEN REPEAT STEPS 1-3 FOR THE WHOLE FORCE! I BELIEVE THIS WILL PUT A SERIOUS DAMPER IN THE 22 VETERAN A DAY SUICIDE STATISTIC.
The Task Force Dagger Foundation has solutions that saved my life and my family. My project Veteran Voyage 360 is purposed in part to raise awareness and resources for what they are doing.
Task Force Dagger Foundation –
• The TFD saved my life by answering the call for help, providing for my family while I was hospitalized, and finding the subsequent state of the art modalities after that 3 month long hospitalization in the James A Haley Polytrauma Unit in 2014.
• Instead of just being on a dozen different prescription meds, and “living” out my life, Task Force Dagger put me through programs that have completely changed my prognosis, and moving in a positive direction of recovery. I am now only on required live sustaining meds, and no pain, psychotropic, or sleep medications.
TFD Programs –
• Immediate Needs – the lifeline, working hand in hand with the SOCOM Care Coalition for the broadest reach and fastest response to needs.
• SOF Health Initiatives – Functional Medicine, Brain Treatment Center (MRT, Neurofeedback, Carrick, etc…)
• Recreational Therapy events – the icing on the cake is after the soldier and family receive the needed care, recreational therapy events are then added which really bring the family back into the light of life, and with the ability to move forward.
My story –
• My diagnosis – While serving in the US Army Special Operations Community, I have had multiple traumatic brain injuries either in direct combat or training for combat from explosions and blast, and also parachute landing falls. I was unconscious for less than a minute each time, and which is one of the major diagnosis factors for MILD TBI, that is, LOC for less than 30 min.
• From those repetitive concussions, I have been diagnosed with several different brain disorders like a Neurocognitive Disorder, and a form of Parkinsonism, but chiefly Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) and Seizures. Ironically, on one hand CTE can’t be confirmed until autopsy, but even if confirmed, there is very little that conventional medicine is doing about it.
• There are alternatives though, and this is how the Task Force Dagger Foundation really made an impact on my family and my life.
Please visit my website here – http://www.veteranvoyage360.com/
This project would not be possible without the support of BOTE Paddleboard Company! www.boteboards.com