Veterans Ban Together to Help Other Veterans Overcome PTSD
Every single day, 22 veterans die as a result of suicide. In April 2015 alone, the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) suicide hotline received 400 calls per day. The US has 2.5 million veterans from the War on Terror and an estimated 25 percent of those veterans are struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). According to the VA, it is estimated that 107,000 veterans are homeless on any given night and the divorce rate amongst combat veterans is at a startling 80 percent. While these statistics are saddening, there are two veterans who are working to help other veterans heal.
Marine veteran, Michael Priddy and U.S. Army veteran, David Allison will cycle 2,700 miles in 47 days to raise awareness and funding for the nation’s veterans from the War on Terror in “No Man Rides Alone.” The goal is to raise $1 million for the Mighty Oaks Foundations, which is committed to assisting veterans in overcoming challenges and finding new purpose by providing healing, training and direction. Both veterans are alumni of the Mighty Oaks Warrior Foundation.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” –Ephesians 6:10-12
Priddy shares why he believes veteran initiatives are imperative.
“Individuals fight everyday for our freedom, and when they return, after months of grueling hardship, they are faced with years of adversity and difficulty. That isn’t right. Something has to change, and government reform is taking too long. It is time to take matters into our own hands and help and honor those who have served.”
Priddy and Allison began their journey on April 28 in Squaw Valley, California and will travel an average of 80 miles per day through the Rocky Mountains, the American heartland, and Appalachia and will end on June 11 at the Marine Corps base in Quantico, Virginia. The veteran’s journey will take them through California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, West Virginia and Virginia. No Man Rides Alone is sponsored by The Eternity Challenge, Serving California and the Mighty Oaks Foundation.
Priddy is a United States Marine that joined the Corps in 1998 and served in the War on Terror in Iraq. He later returned to the Middle East as Department of Defense contractor and supported missions in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Michael was numb to the detrimental effects of post-traumatic stress (PTS), and the toll it was taking on his life and his family. After attending the Mighty Oaks Warrior Fight Club, Michael overcame PTSD and has dedicated his life to helping other veterans who are battling the same challenges.
Allison is a U.S. Army military police veteran and a retired captain of Roseville, California Police Department. David joined the U.S. Army out of high school, and then became a law enforcement officer after his honorable discharge. David served in many areas of law enforcement, including special weapons and tactics, K-9, motors, and investigations. Like most officers, David was forced to deal with the effects of post-traumatic stress (PTS), and saw many colleagues suffer as well. Today, he is committed to helping other fight this challenge and raise awareness for those fighting.
“Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” —1 Timothy 6:12
Risen wants to thank all the men and women who have served and continue to serve our country protecting our freedom. Thank you to the families that sacrifice daily to make this happen. We pray that God would continue to protect our armed forces as they serve us near and far and that there would be healing and restoration when they return home.
Take time to serve the veteran community. Check your local church or community VA for volunteer opportunities. There are many organizations that serve the military and veteran community that need support. It could be preparing a meal, offering a ride or just spending time with them. If you are like Priddy and Allison, you might even consider organizing a benefit or fundraiser for a military or veteran initiative you are passionate about.
Pray for our troops. These men and women are on the frontlines of battle protecting our country. Pray that they would come to know Christ if they don’t already. Pray for the believers in the armed forces that they could share their faith. Pray for protection against the physical and spiritual enemy. Pray for the families that they leave behind while they serve overseas. Pray for their return home that if they struggle with PTSD or suffer any injuries, that they would get help and for healing.
Have a friend that is struggling with PTSD? Offer to come alongside them to get them help. Help them research and connect them with resources like Mighty Oaks Warriors Foundation, Serving California and Eternity Challenge.
For more info visit:
The Eternity Challenge, a faith based 501 (c) (3) organization based in Northern California, has a relentless enthusiasm to help men and women overcome obstacles so that they ultimately achieve economic and social stability. They come along side those struggling with such difficulties as substance abuse, re-entry from jails or prisons and veterans with PTSD. For more information, please visit www.theeternitychallenge.com
Serving California is a faith-based 501(c)(3) organization committed to assisting veterans and incarcerated inmates, and their families and communities. Serving California helps to provide them with resources and offer them hope and help to transcend their situations. For more information, visit http://www.servingcalifornia.org.
Mighty Oaks Warrior Foundation is committed to serving the brokenhearted and individuals suffering from unseen wounds by providing intensive peer-based discipleship through a series of programs, outpost meetings, and speaking events. For more information, visit https://www.mightyoaksprograms.org/.