Tonya Oxendine joined the United States Army a year after finishing high school. She served in the military for 30 years. After coming home Tonya dealt with post-traumatic stress disorder. Yet instead of seeking help, she felt she had to remain silent and keep the pain and emotions bottled up inside. But it would be two more years before Tonya finally sought help for her post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and the severe depression and anxiety she was experiencing.
Air Force veteran Richard Daniel suffered a traumatic brain injury (TBI) during combat. His wife and caregiver, Mina, says Richard came home a different person after his traumatic brain injury. See how WWP's Independence Program and equine therapy helped him regain his confidence and helped Mina with her caregiving needs. #CombatStigma
Army veteran Bryan Wagner received the physical and mental health support and empowerment he deserved as he transitioned to civilian life. “During the early days, these three things sustained me: family, faith, and Wounded Warrior Project – that was my support system.” #CombatStigma
Joey Pierstorff remembers the struggles he had during and after his time in the military. He joined the Army at just 18 years old, motivated to serve after the 9/11 attacks. He spent 11 years in the service, deploying multiple times to Iraq. After leaving the service, many veterans, like Joey, struggle to figure out the next phase of their lives. Through WWP, Joey was able to connect with other veterans, and share his experiences. #CombatStigma
Dan Smee served as a combat medic in Iraq. In 2004, an IED detonated beneath a Humvee in Iraq. Staff Sgt. Dan Nevins was severely injured in the attack. He suffered a TBI and had to have his legs amputated, but Dan Smee saved his life. While Dan Nevins survived because of the great work of his combat medic, Dan Smee still struggled with the trauma from that day. Dan had the chance to reconnect again with his Army buddy, and his life would change from that point forward. #CombatStigma
After his retirement, doctors diagnosed Dan with TBI and PTSD. The urge to quit entered Dan’s mind and he contemplated ending his life. Amazingly, a brochure for WWP interrupted his suicide attempt. Dan’s message to his fellow warriors is a message of hope: “I will pick you up and put you on my shoulder. We will move forward together. If I begin to falter, another veteran will come along and help us both.” #CombatStigma
When Sergio Alfaro came back home from Iraq, he had trouble processing the trauma he was facing. Through the help of Warrior Care Network, he understood his emotions and got to hear the stories of of other veterans going through similar feelings.
Marine veteran Nick Bennett was severely injured in a rocket attack while deployed to Iraq. His Gunnery Sergeant, Dan Miller, lived with the guilt of putting him in harm's way. After years of being apart and with the help of WWP, Dan and Nick finally reunited and continued on their healing journey from their invisible wounds.
Sean Karpf wants to dispel people's myths about PTSD and make them more aware of what's past the stereotypes. Seventy-five percent of our warriors report having PTSD and WWP helps warriors connect with each other so they can heal together.
"When you're in darkness, that's all you see. You think that's all there is. I thought I could handle all of that on my own." Veteran Tonya Oxendine served nearly 30 years in the Army, including tours to Afghanistan and Iraq. Tonya shares her story of strength and recovery, and how WWP Talk showed her she didn't have to face it alone.
Kathy Belleville is a caregiver to her husband and wounded warrior Shane. She became so wrapped in his needs that she forgot to take time to care for herself. Kathy's weekly sessions with WWP Talk gave her a chance to look at her situation with a new set of eyes and changing the way she looks at things
Nick Morrison’s Humvee was hit by improvised explosive devices on two separate occasions while he was deployed to Iraq with the U.S. Marine Corps. But it was the one that blew up a vehicle he wasn’t in that he blames for the severity of his post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and survivor’s guilt. #CombatStigma