Battle Buddies- Vets Mentoring Vets.
(Article by Bruce Bremer, 11 NOV 2013. Source.)
Battle Buddy is a [military] term that refers to a pair of soldiers assigned to each other for mutual support and protection… on and off duty… on or off the battlefield.  At the same time, many of our returning service men and women are suffering from PTSD, traumatic brain injury, and other mind/behavior modifying disorders.  This is reflected in the increasing number of veterans who find themselves incarcerated.
Currently, two states (Oklahoma and New Jersey) have formalized programs that pair veterans nearing release from prison with veterans who can assist them.  In Oklahoma, Veterans Affairs Secretary Rita Aragon created that state’s program last year.  Secretary Aragon previously served in the Oklahoma Air National Guard as a Major General. 
Volunteer veterans help their buddies in apply for benefits, find housing, and land a job.  More than 1,200 inmate veterans stand to benefit from the 200-plus volunteers who provide encouragement, hope, and a focus on the future.
Similarly, Hackensack, New Jersey lawyer Benjamin Lavine announced the creation of that state’s Battle Buddy program.  However, New Jersey’s program identifies veterans who qualify on the beginning of the process… once the person has been arrested.  The New Jersey judiciary stresses that this is not an alternative to incarceration, but an adjunct to rehabilitation.  New Jersey Battle Buddies was formed as a joint effort of that state’s judiciary, Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the Department of Human Services.
I hope that this is just the beginning.  On this Veterans’ Day, let’s all leave the platitudes behind us.   It’s easier to give speeches about the fallen soldier, sailor, marine, or airman than to deal with the messy life of a comrade in arms who can’t leave Vietnam, Iraq, or Afghanistan behind… the carnage continues in the battlefield of the mind.  Some still fighting these ghosts do so valiantly… all the while wearing a police officer’s shield. 
Bruce Bremer, MBA is Law Enforcement Today’s technology contributor. Bruce retired from the Submarine Service after 21 years of in-depth experience with complex electronic technology. Since then, he has been involved in fleet modernization and military research analysis. He teaches electronics and alternative energy at a Virginia college. Besides his MBA, Bruce earned a Bachelor of Science degree in computer networking. He has been volunteering in public safety for many years.
Further reading:
Battle Buddies mentor vets in the criminal justice system.
Veterans Assistance Project (video)
Battle Buddies give incarcerated veterans help and hope. High-res

Battle Buddies- Vets Mentoring Vets.

(Article by Bruce Bremer, 11 NOV 2013. Source.)

Battle Buddy is a [military] term that refers to a pair of soldiers assigned to each other for mutual support and protection… on and off duty… on or off the battlefield.  At the same time, many of our returning service men and women are suffering from PTSD, traumatic brain injury, and other mind/behavior modifying disorders.  This is reflected in the increasing number of veterans who find themselves incarcerated.

Currently, two states (Oklahoma and New Jersey) have formalized programs that pair veterans nearing release from prison with veterans who can assist them.  In Oklahoma, Veterans Affairs Secretary Rita Aragon created that state’s program last year.  Secretary Aragon previously served in the Oklahoma Air National Guard as a Major General. 

Volunteer veterans help their buddies in apply for benefits, find housing, and land a job.  More than 1,200 inmate veterans stand to benefit from the 200-plus volunteers who provide encouragement, hope, and a focus on the future.

Similarly, Hackensack, New Jersey lawyer Benjamin Lavine announced the creation of that state’s Battle Buddy program.  However, New Jersey’s program identifies veterans who qualify on the beginning of the process… once the person has been arrested.  The New Jersey judiciary stresses that this is not an alternative to incarceration, but an adjunct to rehabilitation.  New Jersey Battle Buddies was formed as a joint effort of that state’s judiciary, Department of Military and Veterans Affairs and the Department of Human Services.

I hope that this is just the beginning.  On this Veterans’ Day, let’s all leave the platitudes behind us.   It’s easier to give speeches about the fallen soldier, sailor, marine, or airman than to deal with the messy life of a comrade in arms who can’t leave Vietnam, Iraq, or Afghanistan behind… the carnage continues in the battlefield of the mind.  Some still fighting these ghosts do so valiantly… all the while wearing a police officer’s shield. 

Bruce Bremer, MBA is Law Enforcement Today’s technology contributor. Bruce retired from the Submarine Service after 21 years of in-depth experience with complex electronic technology. Since then, he has been involved in fleet modernization and military research analysis. He teaches electronics and alternative energy at a Virginia college. Besides his MBA, Bruce earned a Bachelor of Science degree in computer networking. He has been volunteering in public safety for many years.

Further reading:

Battle Buddies mentor vets in the criminal justice system.

Veterans Assistance Project (video)

Battle Buddies give incarcerated veterans help and hope.

Bringing the battlefield home.
"Having Atlas as a Battle Buddy through everyday life has noticeably increased my quality of life, and made it easier for me to cope with ‘stress triggers.’ There is value in service dogs for Post Traumatic Stress, and after ten years of struggling I have finally found a ‘prescription’ that helps—and it isn’t pills." - Kenny Bass, founder of The Battle Buddy Foundation. High-res

Bringing the battlefield home.

"Having Atlas as a Battle Buddy through everyday life has noticeably increased my quality of life, and made it easier for me to cope with ‘stress triggers.’ There is value in service dogs for Post Traumatic Stress, and after ten years of struggling I have finally found a ‘prescription’ that helps—and it isn’t pills." - Kenny Bass, founder of The Battle Buddy Foundation.

Battle buddies.
U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Matthew Perry, right, Radio Operator Maintainer And Driver, 82nd Expeditionary Air Support Operations Squadron, and U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Darryl Honick, left, Joint Fire Observer, 3rd Battalion, 159th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, walk back to their M-ATV after supporting Operation Spartan Shield in Southwest Asia.
(Photo by Staff Sergeant Jonathan Snyder, 11 September 2012.)
High-res

Battle buddies.

U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Matthew Perry, right, Radio Operator Maintainer And Driver, 82nd Expeditionary Air Support Operations Squadron, and U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Darryl Honick, left, Joint Fire Observer, 3rd Battalion, 159th Attack Reconnaissance Battalion, walk back to their M-ATV after supporting Operation Spartan Shield in Southwest Asia.

(Photo by Staff Sergeant Jonathan Snyder, 11 September 2012.)


beac-h:

The beautiful face of courage: Lance Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter USMC
Carpenter, 21, of Gilbert lost the eye, most of his teeth and use of his right arm from a grenade blast Nov. 21 near Marjah, Helmand Province, Afghanistan.Friends and family say he threw himself in front of the grenade to protect his best friend in Afghanistan, Cpl. Nick Eufrazio
This deserves more notes then anything on Tumblr. It’s sad to say stupid pictures of a flower some girl takes with a Nikon D40 that her parents bought her for christmas or a picture of A Day To Remember has more notes then this. The world is fucked up. So much respect for this man.
ahhh i cant even, <3

[Actually, he threw himself on the grenade to protect his battle buddy who was in the gunner’s roost with him. A piece of shrapnel struck his friend anyway, lodging in his brain and causing unrecoverable damage. Lance Corporal Carpenter had reconstructive surgery to reattach his jaw. This is one of the earlier photos of him, there are a number of posts featuring this honorable Marine in the #soldierporn archives, including one outlining a MOH petition by his fellow Marines.
ETA: Full article here. -R]

beac-h:

The beautiful face of courage: Lance Cpl. William Kyle Carpenter USMC

Carpenter, 21, of Gilbert lost the eye, most of his teeth and use of his right arm from a grenade blast Nov. 21 near Marjah, Helmand Province, Afghanistan.

Friends and family say he threw himself in front of the grenade to protect his best friend in Afghanistan, Cpl. Nick Eufrazio

This deserves more notes then anything on Tumblr. It’s sad to say stupid pictures of a flower some girl takes with a Nikon D40 that her parents bought her for christmas or a picture of A Day To Remember has more notes then this. The world is fucked up. So much respect for this man.

ahhh i cant even, <3

[Actually, he threw himself on the grenade to protect his battle buddy who was in the gunner’s roost with him. A piece of shrapnel struck his friend anyway, lodging in his brain and causing unrecoverable damage. Lance Corporal Carpenter had reconstructive surgery to reattach his jaw. This is one of the earlier photos of him, there are a number of posts featuring this honorable Marine in the #soldierporn archives, including one outlining a MOH petition by his fellow Marines.

ETA: Full article here. -R]

(via caffeineandcartridges)

Leave no man behind,

Not anywhere, not ever.

In the heat of a

Firefight, or that

Battlefield in your own mind,

You are not alone.

WATCH OUT FOR YOUR BATTLE BUDDY.

(Article by Karen Parrish, American Forces Press Service, 10 September 2012.)

WASHINGTON - September is National Suicide Prevention and Awareness Month. It’s a reminder to everyone in the military community to watch out for each other, a senior defense official said.

Jacqueline Garrick, acting director of the Defense Suicide Prevention Office, told the Pentagon Channel and American Forces Press Service the Defense Department’s theme for the month’s observance, “Stand By Them,” is a prompt to get involved when a friend or loved one seems distressed.

Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, she noted, has been adamant about encouraging people to seek help, and in stressing leaders’ responsibility to ensure their people get the counseling they need.

"I think the first key factor is to understand the signs and symptoms of suicide, and not to be afraid to ask the question," she said. "It’s a myth that if you ask somebody, ‘Are you feeling suicidal?’ that you’ll put a thought in their head. And that’s just not going to happen. If somebody’s really in distress, … the first thing we want people to know to do is ask the questions, ‘Do you feel like you could hurt yourself,’ ‘Do you have a plan?,’ and ‘How can I help?’"

Garrick said relationship issues, legal or financial problems often are factors in the lives of people at risk for suicide. Anyone suspecting possible suicidal impulses in a friend, co-worker or loved one also should be sensitive to changes in moods or behavior patterns, she added.

Excessive risk-taking, substance abuse, giving away possessions and changes in life insurance arrangements are all possible indicators someone may be considering suicide, she said.

"Be mindful of those kinds of things," she advised. Garrick added that mood changes in both directions can indicate a person is considering suicide.

"Sometimes it’s a euphoria, or it’s a depression," she said. "So just be mindful. And leadership needs to know … what their service members are like, so that they can know when there have been those changes."

Garrick said she encourages military family members concerned about a loved one’s state of mind to contact commands, chaplains’ offices, community services, or any other means of help they can reach.

"One of the key features that we’re working on right now is with the Department of Veterans Affairs," she said. "For several years, they have been working on the Veteran’s Crisis Line, and we have been working with them to rebrand [it] as the Military Crisis Line so that our men and women in uniform know that the Military Crisis Line — the ‘1-800-273-TALK(8255) number, press 1 if you’re military’ — is for them as well."

The Military Crisis Line is an overarching and confidential resource — “one number to call when you’re experiencing any kind of crisis, any kind of suicidal ideation, any thoughts, feelings … that you’re not sure how to deal with,” Garrick said.

The crisis line also has an online chat option at http://www.militarycrisisline.net, and a text component reachable by smartphone at 838255, she explained.

"You can access assistance any way, any time of the day, from anywhere in the world," Garrick said, adding other options are in place or in development for troops overseas.

Any of the various means of approach to the crisis line will put military members or their families in contact with a VA mental health provider, she said. Garrick noted family members often are the first to notice a loved one’s struggles, and she encourages them, as well, to reach out through the crisis line.

"We know that family members are usually the first ones to see if somebody has had any changes in mood, personality and activity," Garrick said. "They’re the ones that need to hear the message first.

"We want to give them a way to get involved," she continued. "If they call the crisis line, family members can be supported as well – for their service member, and for their own issues."

Garrick acknowledged there is a common belief among military members that seeking help for mental health issues can damage their careers.

"Not seeking help is going to harm your career even more," she said. "So even if you have to take a medication, or you can’t deploy, or you have to go for further testing, … there are benefits to treatment. Treatment works."

Mental health support “that we know works” is available across the services through military treatment facilities, community mental health services and chaplains’ offices, Garrick said.

"That will benefit your career in the long run," she added. "And it will benefit your life in the long run, because this isn’t just about your military career – it’s about your family well-being, it’s about your safety, and it’s about what your long-term plan is for your future."

Someone who calls the crisis line, Garrick said, “can expect to talk to somebody who is compassionate and competent. These are all trained clinicians [and] providers that are on the other end of the line.”

Military crisis line responders understand military culture, and many are themselves veterans, she said.

"The VA works very closely with this department to make sure that our service members are being cared for properly," she said. "So they can expect to get the best possible assistance and competent care."

Related Sites:
Military Crisis Line 
Veterans Crisis Line 
Army Suicide Prevention Program 
Navy Suicide Prevention Program 
Air Force Suicide Prevention Program 
Marine Corps Suicide Prevention Program 
Special Report: Suicide Prevention and Awareness 


(-A)(A-) So how many of you have a battle buddy or a friend that you are pretty much willing to help bleach a crime scene and pour the quicklime into the hole for. How have they been able to influence your life for the positive even when they get on your damn nerves? Stay Safe, Stay Real, Laugh to Heal. [Peter the PTSD Awareness Penguin.]
High-res

(-A)(A-) So how many of you have a battle buddy or a friend that you are pretty much willing to help bleach a crime scene and pour the quicklime into the hole for. How have they been able to influence your life for the positive even when they get on your damn nerves? Stay Safe, Stay Real, Laugh to Heal. [Peter the PTSD Awareness Penguin.]

Excerpt from an actual recent conversation with an old Army buddy

thedogtagchronicles:

I love that I have the kind of friends that hop on a plane and help me burn Paris to the ground if anything happened to my daughter, but would also join in the police manhunt if I ever lost it because it is better to be taken out by a friend than a stranger.

They wouldn’t enjoy taking me out, but they would do it. True friends don’t help you commit horrible crimes, they stop you from becoming the kind of monster that we are supposed to fight.

conorkenway:

“You know, they say the World War II guys were the ‘Best Generation’. Well, those who have fought every war since were the best of their generation. They went, they served, they sacrificed, and they fought like tigers. They were noble.” — Joe Galloway

(via do-or-die-ydg)