Tag: infantry

War, Severe Struggles then Finding Peace on the Ranch | Ben Singleton

Ben Singleton grew up in a small town in northwest Indiana. He says the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11, which he watched on a television in a high school classroom, ignited a zeal within him to serve his country. He was 18 when he enlisted in the Army after graduation. A year later Ben deployed for the invasion of Iraq as a combat infantryman and paratrooper with the 82nd Airborne division. Three years later he deployed again, this time as a sniper and member of the 4th Infantry division. Singleton re-enlisted twice and left the Army in just under seven years after attaining the rank of Staff Sgt. When he returned to civilian life, Ben encountered a series of struggles, including a troubled marriage. He credits the support of family –mom, dad and younger brother—and friends, with helping him find a healthy way forward. Today, Singleton is the manager of therapeutic riding center called Heaven’s Gait Ranch which is located in a rural community north of Milwaukee. The ranch provides a variety of services to guests of all ages including veterans and individuals with special needs. Ben appreciates the opportunity to make connections with many different people. He calls the work deeply rewarding.


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 and Erin Schraufnagel 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, Erin Schraufnagel 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.


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Marine Veteran, Writing, Literacy the Arts and Healing

Scott Schultz grew up on a farm in Osseo, WI. Scott is co-founder, president and executive director of The Heartbeat Center for Writing, Literacy and the Arts, Inc. A U.S. Marine Corps veteran, he’s worked as a reporter and editor in print journalism for more than 45 years He’s also worked in radio and television journalism during the past five years, and has written hundreds of sociology essays about people’s connections with the land. Some of his writing was compiled into a book, Rural Routes and Ruts (The Guest Cottage, 2004), which has been used as required reading in a variety of university courses; his essays also were used in regional and national rural life projects, and he maintains a blog, “Rural Routes.”

Schultz has lectured about writing motivation and processes to elementary, high school and university students in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Florida and Pennsylvania, and has conducted writing programs for people of all ages in many other settings.

The Heartbeat’s Veterans Expressing Themselves project has become a large portion of Schultz’s life, as he and The Heartbeat co-founder Denise Beasley have organized the project from its beginning.


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 and Erin Schraufnagel 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, Erin Schraufnagel 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.

“Your son didn’t come home” | Heidi Carlson

Heidi Carlson’s father was a Marine, her family had a history of substance abuse and addiction. Her marriage to a Vietnam War veteran — scarred by abuse — ended in divorce. The loves of her life would be her two sons and her six grandchildren. When her son David announced his decision to enlist in the US Army. Heidi was frightened yet proud. David, an infantryman, returned from his first deployment to  Iraq in good spirit and  health. When meeting David at the airport returning from his second tour she immediately noticed, as a mother would, that his eyes were different and evasive. While hugging her son he said to her, “your son did not come home this time.” Heartbroken and afraid, what waited for them both were many years of suffering, substance abuse, severe mental health issues and prison punished them, but a mothers love would never surrender.


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 and Erin Schraufnagel 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, Erin Schraufnagel 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.

When your family fights your war | Ken Lee

Kenneth Lee immigrated to the United States with his family as a young boy. The son of a South Korean Army career soldier and Vietnam War Veteran, Lee developed a sense of duty to his new country. Completing medical school and determined to serve and “give back” he joined the Wisconsin Army National Guard.

There, as a commander of the Company Bravo of the 118th Area Support Medical Battalion, he suffered a traumatic brain injury during a suicide car bombing while on a combat tour to Iraq in 2003.

Years of physical and psychological challenges — and of the the haunting guilt of leaving his command post and company behind in Iraq — would strain Lee’s wife and children. They would be the real casualties of his war — suffering the effects of a husband and father emotionally detached from the family.

“You don’t smile anymore,” said Lee’s daughter — then he sought help.

After recognizing the need to take responsibility, he is determined to maintain the health of his family as the primary health care unit. His passion to help veterans is shown through his devotion to the adaptive sports community.

“Your son didn’t come home” | Heidi Carlson

Heidi Carlson’s father was a Marine, her family had a history of substance abuse and addiction. Her marriage to a Vietnam War veteran — scarred by abuse — ended in divorce.
The loves of her life would be her two sons and her six grandchildren.

When her son David announced his decision to enlist in the US Army,
Heidi was frightened yet proud. David, an infantryman, returned from his first deployment to Iraq in good spirit and health.

When Meeting David at the airport returning from his second tour she immediately noticed, as a mother would, that his eyes were different and evasive.

While hugging her son he said to her, “your son did not come home this time.”

Heartbroken and afraid, what waited for them both were many years of suffering, substance abuse, severe mental health issues and prison punished them, but a mothers love would never surrender.