enw10kwal4 SHAKARAT, Iraq --06Jun07 Drew Brown/Star and Stripes Spc. Josiah Hollopeter, 27, of Valentine, Neb., left, and 1st Lt. Anthony Von Plinksy, 28, of Columbia, S.C. of Troop C, 6th Squadron, 9th Cavalry Regiment, scan for possible snipers near Patrol Base K-Wal, in the village of Shakarat, in Iraqs Diyala province. An insurgent sniper killed one soldier with Troop C in March, shortly after U.S. troops moved into secure the area, and has continued to plague the base ever since. The base was later named for the soldier. (enw# 61p cs)
For many veterans returning home from war, fitting back into civilian life can be the hardest adjustment.
Sergeant David Wright served in Iraq from 2000 to 2004. When he returned he realized things just weren't the same. He came to the Polytrauma Clinic in 2005 and hasn't left since.
“I've had ups and downs with my life since I’ve been dealing with PTSD” says Wright.
“And I've really received the care and support I need”.
The Polytrauma Clinic is part of Omaha's VA Medical Center and helps veterans and their families deal with traumatic physical and mental injuries. Heather Bojanski, a social worker says the facility is a one-stop shop.
"You can have someone in your same unit sitting next to you in the waiting room and they don't know if you’re seeing primary care or seeing mental health."
Wright comes to daily group meetings to share his experiences with other veterans. He also says doing acupuncture and yoga at the clinic once a week helps with his PTSD.
“Before I wouldn't be able to open up at all, talk about my feelings,” says Wright.
He says despite the stigma among veterans, it’s important to get the help you need when you return.
“Don't wait till later, don't wait till things start crumbling apart. Just reach out even if you don't think its helping."
If you have concerns about a veteran you know or for more information call the Polytruama Clinic at 402-995-4149.