Mental health. It is something that many veterans who have served in high-intensity combat zones struggle with.
The Department Of Defense says 98 veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan war took their lives last year. Now, a new campaign is hoping to change that. “We know there are many veterans who do not come into the VA for care,” says Dr. Roslein Everett who is the Chief Of Mental Health at the Local VA Sierra Nevada Health Care System.
We caught up with Darla Young at the Veterans Guest House on Locust Street. Young’s first husband, a World War Two II veteran, took his own life. She says, “He never would talk about any of his experiences. The only way I knew anything about his experiences was because of the nightmares and dreams he had.”
The Department Of Veteran Affairs is advertising its Suicide Prevention Hotline on 12 local buses. The program has a full-time Suicide Prevention Coordinator who ensures veterans receive the appropriate services. The hotline is staffed 24 hours a day.
If you or anyone you know is struggling to transition into civilian life after serving in a combat zone, call the VA’s Suicide Prevention Hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).