Building Libraries in Vietnam with Chuck Theusch Part 2

Chuck Theusch lives in Greater Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and served with the army in Vietnam throughout 1969 and 1970. He was a member of the 11th Infantry Brigade in the Americal Division, positioned at fire stations responsible for calculating mortar rounds. He is the CEO and founder of the Library of Vietnam Project. Since 1999, he has returned to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos on 52 occasions to build libraries that educate children on unexploded bombs and landmine safety awareness, legal and medical education, and many other fields. Chuck grew up on a dairy farm and attended Kewaskum High School, where he played baseball, basketball, and football.

Today, Chuck joins me to discuss going back to Vietnam to build libraries with the motivation to see freedom celebrated within the country. He shares how looking at the past and the Vietnam war should be seen from the perspective of gaining wisdom. Chuck discusses how war’s viewpoints differ between the infantry, special forces, and pilots and shares how rewarding Vietnam veterans find returning to the country. He shares how Vietnamese culture is remarkable and highlights their unique strength in handling and recovering from disasters. Chuck also discusses the continuing problems and risks associated with unexploded bombs and landmines and the projects that are helping the people affected by them.

“We can’t change the past, but we can change the future.” – Chuck Theusch

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • Chuck’s desire to see freedom celebrated in Vietnam
  • Why we should look at the past and use that Vietnamese-wisdom and take inspiration from it
  • How the viewpoints of the war are different between pilots, special forces, and infantry
  • The rewards that veterans can find through going back to Vietnam
  • The Vietnamese intestinal fortitude and way of handling disasters
  • The political fallout of the Chinese railroad, the Silk Road
  • The ongoing problems of unexploded bombs in Vietnam

Resources Mentioned:

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

Building Libraries in Vietnam with Chuck Theusch Part 1

Chuck Theusch served with the Army in 1969 and 1970 in Vietnam as a member of the 11th Infantry Brigade in the Americal Division. During the last 20 years, Chuck has made dozens of trips to Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia to build more than 35 libraries. He is the founder and CEO of the Library of Vietnam Project, which builds libraries that promote educational programs on landmine and unexploded bomb safety awareness, medical and legal education, and many other fields. Chuck was raised on a dairy farm, attended Kewaskum High School, and played football, baseball, and basketball. Today he lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Today, Chuck joins me to discuss going back to Vietnam to build libraries and his experiences of friendly fire. He shares his motive for volunteering for the draft, his feelings, and his curiosity surrounding Vietnam.Chuck discusses how the ‘old-timers’ looked after the new guys, how returning from the war affected him, and how he became an attorney, defending veterans and fighting for VA benefits. Chuck also discusses his passion for building libraries in Vietnam and his belief that knowledge and information creates freedom.

” To understand what war is all about and having done something like that myself, I’ve got a lot of compassion for any guy in any war that does the human things you can do in your life: make a mistake.” – Chuck Theusch

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • How Chuck volunteered for the draft with a friend and joined the Buddy Program
  • Chuck’s mixed feelings and driving curiosity to find out what was happening in Vietnam
  • How the one-week in-country training and defectors from the Chieu Hoi Program of Vietnam highlighted the seriousness of what was to come
  • How the ‘old-timers’ looked out for the FNGs (new guys)
  • Why inverting a number when calculating a fire emission round and almost causing a friendly fire became the incident that sticks in Chuck’s mind
  • How being called a baby-killer when returning from Vietnam at the age of nineteen affected Chuck
  • Reflecting on Vietnam and how later in life in this starts to surface in a more significant way
  • Fighting for veterans and their benefits as an attorney
  • Why it is crucial to build libraries in Vietnam and give people the freedom to have access to information
  • Becoming more in tune with the cultural aspects of Vietnam

Resources Mentioned:

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

Military Opportunities and Transitioning to Civilian Life with Todd Cochrane

Todd Cochrane is a United States Navy Veteran who served 25 years and retired with the rank of Senior Petty Officer. He is the CEO of RawVoice and Blubrry Podcasting, a podcast platform that has built a directory of 950,000 shows. Todd wrote the world’s first book on podcasting and is the founder of People’s Choice Podcast Awards. He is credited with introducing advertising into the podcasting space and was inducted into the Podcast Hall of Fame in 2015. His grandfather was a World War II veteran and had a fundamental role in the events that occurred after Pearl Harbor. Today he resides in Quincy, Michigan, having spent most of the last 25 years living in Honolulu, Hawaii.

Todd joins me today to discuss how grasping opportunities can put you in your perfect role in the military and how he made a smooth transition back into the civilian world. Todd shares how he landed rewarding roles, first as Lockheed P-3 Orion aircrew and later working on special projects with VPU-2. He discusses the stresses that a military career can put on spouses and family and the support and resources that the military provides at the outset of a military career and retirement. Todd also shares the values of bonds and brotherhood, which can last a lifetime. 

” When we make this transition to the civilian world, we have to understand them more than they have to understand us.” – Todd Cochrane

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • Why Todd decided to join the Navy and returned to MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Stations) twice to get the service role he wanted
  • Carrying the burden to not disappoint your family and Todd’s experiences on the first day of recruitment training
  • How grasping an opportunity landed Todd his ideal role as aircrew with Lockheed P-3 Orions
  • Arriving in Guam and the rewarding job of an aviation electronics technician
  • The proactive approach that allowed Todd to work for VPU-2 (Special Projects Unit 2) in Honolulu
  • How the employment cycle can be extremely stressful on military spouses and family
  • How support ops play a crucial role in the safety of troops on the ground
  • The support and resources for veterans transitioning back to civilian life
  • How building a business made it easy for Todd to retire and return to civilian life
  • How the military brotherhood and sisterhood creates lifetime bonds

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

The Reckoning: Anger, Depression, and Reconciliation with Carol Sprague

Carol Sprague is the wife of Chuck Sprague, a former Vietnam Veteran and retired VA Psychiatrist. Carol and Chuck both grew up on orange groves and met during a Goodbye Picnic when Carol was sixteen years old. Chuck asked Carol’s parents for their permission to take Carol to the Goodbye Dance. A Romeo and Juliet relationship with many arguments along the way, this changed when they married just prior to Chuck going to Vietnam. Carol and Chuck live happily in Muskego, Wisconsin, after working through the trauma, depression, and anger that ensued after Chuck’s return from Vietnam.

Carol joins me today to discuss the reckoning that occurred a decade after Chuck returned injured from Vietnam. She shares the challenges and emotions associated with being the wife of a Veteran who has seen extensive action. Carol shares how Chuck kept his Vietnam experiences to himself for ten years, before his father’s death caused a day of reckoning. She discusses their reconciliation and finding peace through religion and philosophy. Carol also highlights how communication and counseling can help Veterans and their spouses as well as the importance of avoiding shaming and blame.

“We were two ships passing in the night when it came to his Vietnam experience – until it all came apart.” – Carol Sprague

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • Carol’s feelings of anger towards the government for joining a war based on oil-related motives
  • Carol’s experience with being questioned about what our government was doing in Vietnam, as a twenty-year-old woman
  • The cold and hard telegram from the government informing Carol that Chuck was injured in Vietnam
  • The Navy and government’s lack of outreach about what to expect from Chuck’s recovery and his reaction to his experiences
  • Why Carol wanted Chuck to share more stories about his experiences
  • How Chuck’s dad dying in the 1980s became the incident that finally caused him to open up about his Vietnam experiences
  • How philosophy and religion helped Chuck work through his anger and depression
  • How Carol and Chuck reconciled the difficulties of their post-Vietnam decade by discussing their emotions and feelings
  • Why you should seek counseling, hold on to your friends, find someone you can talk to, and avoid shaming and blaming

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

The Emotions of War and the Wounded Healer with Chuck Sprague

After joining the Navy Reserves in 1966, Chuck Sprague became a Navy Corpsman who served in the 3rd Marine Division in Vietnam. He was injured during Operation Dewey Canyon and felt lucky to survive, where he felt the government was trying to get him killed. He returned to the United States and became a student, where he had similar feelings about the government, which he took very personally. Chuck then became a medical doctor and psychiatrist and spent his career at Veteran Administration Hospitals throughout the United States. Today, Chuck resides in the Milwaukee suburb of Muskego, Wisconsin.

Chuck joins me today to discuss the emotions of war and healing through work and our relationships. He discusses how working in Navy hospitals is a hard introduction to the reality of war injuries and his feelings of fear as he arrived in Vietnam to serve the regiment nicknamed as “The Walking Dead.” Chuck reveals the toll that his time in Vietnam has had on his body and mind. He highlights how the stigma and treatment of Vietnam veterans affected him and the healing process that required the support of his relatives, finding meaning in his experiences, and how his work became a form of his own therapy.

” You can sometimes heal yourself through work and your interests.” – Chuck Sprague

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • Chuck’s experience while training at a Navy hospital and how it felt to know you would be in a perilous job
  • Why Chuck believes working in veteran hospitals is a difficult introduction to the graphic injuries of war
  • Arriving in Vietnam in 1968 and being told to “run like hell” as they dropped the deck
  • How it felt to be assigned to One-Nine Marine Regiment, given the nickname “The Walking Dead,” by General Giap and the communist forces in South Vietnam
  • How no promised replacements meant Chuck could not rotate out and how this led to feelings of betrayal
  • How constant trolling across the infiltration routes resulted in Chuck dropping from 240lbs to 150lbs in eight months
  • How the emotions of war change from fear to numbness as you recognize who gets hurt is a matter of luck
  • Being injured in Operation Dewey Canyon and the crushing feelings of being so changed that his wife did not recognize him
  • What it was like to be shunned by older veterans and the stigma attached to being a Vietnam veteran
  • How flashbacks plagued Chuck 15 years later, causing depression and anger
  • How working as a physiatrist and giving back to other veterans became a form of therapy
  • The importance of support from relationships and the difficulties of reintegrating into normal life
  • Why finding meaning in your experiences will help you heal and rejoin civilian life

Resources Mentioned:

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing

Souled Out: War and Inner Peace with Mike Orban Part 2

Mike Orban is an army veteran who served in the Vietnam War in 1971. After returning home to civilian life, Mike struggled to cope with the experiences he had during combat, which led him into decades of darkness and isolation. In his book Souled Out: A Memoir of War and Inner Peace, Mike discusses his story of fighting in the war and dealing with combat’s traumatic impact. Today, Mike dedicates himself to outreach, connecting with numerous veterans and their families through his organization, the Orban Foundation for Veterans. He is also the co-founder of the Warrior Partnership, an initiative through the Medical College of Wisconsin that connects medical students with veterans with war-related trauma.

Mike joins me today to dive deeper into discussing his return to civilian life after serving in Vietnam, and the measures he took to maintain a facade of normalcy while fighting his distressing inner battles. Mike discusses his decision to join the Peace Corps, how this experience served as a spiritual awakening for him, and what it was like when he returned home to the United States once more. Mike also highlights his experiences with mental health care and how becoming more educated on his traumatic responses empowered him to move forward.

” The fear that I had of losing my mind exceeds any fear I’ve ever had in my life.” – Mike Orban

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • Whether other people noticed Mike’s mental health struggles when he returned to civilian life
  • How Mike’s post-traumatic stress impacted his ability to pursue his education upon his return
  • The anger, guilt, and shame Mike felt towards himself because of his experiences in Vietnam
  • Why Mike decided to go into the Peace Corps and his family’s reaction to this decision
  • Where Mike traveled to with the Peace Corps, the people he interacted with along the way, and the life lessons he learned
  • When Mike started experiencing suicidal ideation
  • How the support of Mike’s family members helped him manage his symptoms
  • Mike’s experience with mental health professionals, what his early therapy focused on, and the help he believes saved his life
  • How being in a group with other veterans gave Mike a new perspective on his war trauma
  • The list Mike received in therapy that changed his life and allowed him to address his traumatic reactions
  • Why we should focus on mental health education rather than mental illness and the insights Mike has gained through his trauma recovery journey
  • Why it is crucial to consider the impact of war on veterans’ families

Resources Mentioned:

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

Souled Out: War and Inner Peace with Mike Orban Part 1

After a year of intense combat in the jungles of Vietnam, Mike Orban, an Army veteran who served in the Vietnam War in 1971, returned home with severe post-traumatic stress that led him to an incredibly dark mental place. Mike discusses his story and experience with PTSD in his book Souled Out: A Memoir of War and Inner Peace, which highlights his journey in the war and how he dealt with combat’s traumatic impact. Today, Mike dedicates himself to outreach, connecting with numerous veterans and their families through his organization, the Orban Foundation for Veterans.

Mike Orban joins me today to discuss his journey before and during his year of service in the Vietnam War. He shares how serving in Vietnam transformed his worldview, his relationship with fear and courage during his time overseas, and the “thousand-yard stare” Mike witnessed in the troops who left combat. Mike discusses how being in the war completely altered his perspectives on life and the human race, and the guilt and shame he felt around his thoughts. Mike also highlights the overwhelming trauma symptoms he experienced upon returning to civilian life, including intense rage, anxiety, depression, social isolation, and the coping mechanisms he turned to in an effort to manage the intensity.

“I remember thinking to myself: ‘I am going home to life as it had been before.’” – Mike Orban

This week on the Stigma Free Vet Zone Podcast:

  • How Mike’s family life shifted when he was a teenager and the impact this had on him
  • What Mike’s view of the world was like before he entered the military
  • What basic training was like for Mike physically and emotionally
  • Mike’s experience entering Vietnam and the point that fear and terror of the situation set in
  • Why Mike thought there was a good chance he might not survive the war
  • What coming home from the Vietnam War was like for Mike
  • How the war impacted Mike’s faith and spirituality and some of the events and experiences that haunted him mentally
  • How civilian life changed for Mike when he returned from Vietnam and the mental “bunker” Mike placed himself in to cope
  • The hypervigilance, isolation, rage, and panic attacks Mike dealt with after he returned home
  • Mike’s experience with mental health stigma

Resources Mentioned:

This episode is brought to you by…

The Orban Foundation for Veterans is dedicated to bringing greater hope, understanding, resolution, and togetherness on issues of civilian readjustment for all military veterans and their families. Orban Foundation for Veterans promotes the importance of education, identification, understanding, acceptance, and resolution of many of the complex and severe responses to war and military life.

Visit our website to learn more about the Orban Foundation for Veterans and to support our mission.

Helping Veterans & Their Families Transition to Civilian Life

Thanks for tuning into this segment of the Stigma Free Vet Zone podcast, the show dedicated to helping veterans and their families make the transition from the military to civilian life and culture. If you enjoyed this episode, please head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe to the show and leave a review. For more stories, insight, and resources on coping with military-related trauma and PTSD, visit our website and follow us on Facebook and LinkedIn. Don’t forget to share your favorite episodes across social media to help us raise awareness and help our brothers and sisters and their families transition to civilian life.

DISCLAIMER: The information and content shared in each episode of the Stigma Free Vet Zone are for informational purposes only. The Stigma Free Vet Zone hosts, Mike Orban & Bob Bach, are not, nor claim to be, medical doctors, psychologists, or psychiatrists and should not be held responsible for any claims, medical advice, or therapy/treatment recommendations mentioned on this podcast. Any advice mentioned or shared by Mike Orban, Bob Bach, or their guests is strictly for purposes of bringing awareness to the veteran community and the services available. Please speak with a medical professional before taking any advice or starting any therapy or treatment discussed or shared on this podcast.

Dan Van Buskirk & Linda Bobot on Forging Sacred Relationships with Service Dogs

Dan Van Buskirk and Linda Bobot join us today to discuss the sacred connection and relationship between veterans and their dogs. Dan shares how dogs were used to detect traps and enemy fire in combat and how they became valuable members of military teams. They discuss how dogs can help veterans take control of their emotions, responses, and expectations. and how dogs help veterans diffuse powerful negative emotions like feeling inadequate and survivor’s guilt. They also discuss the dog selection process that takes place between veterans and their service dogs, how our dogs reflect our feelings and emotions, and how HAVEN helps veterans choose the perfect dog for their needs.

Continue reading “Dan Van Buskirk & Linda Bobot on Forging Sacred Relationships with Service Dogs”

Balancing Compassion with Emotional Control as an AirEvac Medic with Bill Austin

Bill Austin joins us today to discuss his drive to join the military and his experiences while serving his country in Grenada, Bosnia, Kosovo as well as Afghanistan and Iraq. He explains why he decided to switch from the Army to the Air National Guard, his experiences while serving in each branch, and the challenges he faced in transitioning and adapting to the Air Guard’s culture. He describes the emotional turmoil military medical personnel experience when they lose a patient, the difficulties of dividing resources in an effort to save as many lives as possible, and the struggles of shutting off your emotions to ensure you’re providing the best care possible. Bill also discusses his medical discharge from the military and his experience of permanently returning home to his wife and son.

Continue reading “Balancing Compassion with Emotional Control as an AirEvac Medic with Bill Austin”

Guitars for Vets: Healing Invisible Wounds of War Through Music & Pet Companions with Dan Van Buskirk

Dan Van Buskirk is a former Reconnaissance Marine who has served his country during the Vietnam War. For several years, Dan has worked with veteran outreach efforts to help military veterans develop healthy coping skills and heal from post-war trauma, PTSD, and combat-related anxiety. He is the founder of HAVEN – Hounds and Vets Empowered Now – a 501(c)3 organization dedicated to providing support to veterans in the mutually beneficial relationships forged with dogs. Dan is also an active member of Guitars For Vets, a non-profit organization helping veterans cope with combat-related PTSD through the healing power of music and community.

Continue reading “Guitars for Vets: Healing Invisible Wounds of War Through Music & Pet Companions with Dan Van Buskirk”