Source: The Corydon Democrat

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Support group offers aid to veterans, current military

by Jo Ann Spieth-Saylor

May 20, 2014

With an increase in the number of military personnel being diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, four local veterans have established a support group for active and retired soldiers.

Veterans 4 Veterans meets each Monday at 8 p.m. at the Communicare building, located at 2025 Bypass Road in Brandenburg.

Opting to be as anonymous as possible, Duane, who resides in southern Harrison County, said the core four men who organized the support group offer free counseling and fellowship.

"You put the four of us together, and we can help just about everybody," said Duane, a "retired Army man" who served in the Army's 9th Infantry and was stationed in Alaska in the early 1960s.

The group is there to help provide support and help in any area, including drugs and alcohol, marital and sexual, as well as to direct those in need to services that are available to them.

"One of the hardest things is to get someone to open up about themselves," Duane said.

That's where the group support comes in.

"They hear others talking about their situation," Duane said. "The others, you can just tell that they thought they were unique."

"The suicide rate for veterans is about 3 percent higher than it is for other occupations," he said.

National statistics indicate that approximately 300,000 soldiers and Marines suffer from PTSO, with a 20-percent increase of those who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan over previous wars.

"We want to help soldiers coming back from wherever it might be," Duane said, adding they can be active military personnel or those who have been discharged. "There are a lot of soldiers from Vietnam who need this program."

For more information, call Duane at 812-732-4848 or any of the other three organizers (Richard at 1-270-855-6713, Larry at 1-270-302-1631 or Kevin at 1-270-945-4677).