During the time that I was in the Navy, I developed PTSD. After completing my enlistment, my wife and I started a family and focused on entrepreneurial efforts to keep my mind off of what I endured in the service. I lost my business with the financial collapse and recession. Suddenly, I was divorced and homeless. With my confidence and mental state failing, I was forced to deal with several issues that I had suppressed for a long time.
Months of living in my car and a fruitless job search led me to the VA in search of help. They directed me to Alpha Omega Veteran Services. There I was able to gain control of my combat stress and reconnect with loved ones.
Today, I am a loving father employed in government services. I volunteer my time assisting other combat victims to deal with problems.
The movie “Top Gun” inspired me to enlist in the military straight out of high school. I also had a chance to serve on a humanitarian mission to Haiti and also faced combat in Iraq; my job was to protect convoys containing goods, food, and civilians. During my time of service, I suffered from severe combat stress that complicated my readjustment to society when I returned from Iraq. I over medicated myself with pills and alcohol and caused a lot of pain for my family.
I went to the VA to receive treatment, but I didn’t want to go back home because I wasn’t ready—I didn’t want to cause my family any more problems until I got my problems figured out, so I came here to Alpha Omega. The staff is great and they help veterans to get the tools that we need to rebuild our lives to get back to a normal place. Today, I still am a big fan of Alabama football and have a dream to become a pilot in the future.
After leaving the military I realized that the deployments I had been through had left a toll on my body, both mentally and physically. Although I didn’t know it then but as the year’s progress my battles with combat stress would worsen. Alpha Omega was the tool kit needed to empower myself to learn how to cope and succeed. I have now turned those tools into a successful career of marketing, branding and software development.