GO TO WIN!WAR WIN TO GO!
NO EXIT STRATEDGY REQUIRED!
~ GRIFFIN'S LAIR COMMO HUT ~
~ For Brothers True ~
Afghanistan & Iraqi Veterans
THE IRON TRIANGLE!
Please e-mail comments about the lair and/or our PCSD books to:
Thank you, Bro!
PLEASE COME TO THE AID OF THIS COMBAT BROTHER AND ALL WHO SUFFER FROM PCSD. THANK YOU!
To: Peter “Grif” Griffin - 22 September 2009Biology of PTSD Anger
RE: ECHCS PTSD Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program
My name is Claude “Butch Chavez, I’m Vice President of the American Legion Riders District 8 here in Pueblo. I’m a Vietnam Veteran diagnosed with combat PTSD. I also consider myself a Veterans Advocate. First I want to apologize for the length of this letter; my passion about this subject requires that I try to describe this subject in some detail so that you can understand our (veteran’s) concern.
Because of my PTSD I was required to attend a 7 week PTSD Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program at the Eastern Colorado Health Care System (Denver VA). I was housed on floor 7 West proudly referred to as “Camp 7 West”. The program does require we live on the unit and are only allowed to leave on the weekends. Dr. Lawrence Wahlberg and his great staff treat us with honor and dignity throughout the program. They are the best of the best.
The program is designed to identify and treat each veterans (15-19 in number) PTSD caused by their traumatic experiences in a combat zone. Once evaluated a treatment plan is then designed specifically for each veteran. The program is not designed to cure PTSD as PTSD cannot be cured, it can only be treated. Each veteran’s PTSD is different than the next veteran so we have individual therapy as well as group sessions and classes. We are taught how to deal with all of the symptoms of PTSD. The techniques, which are referred to as tools, tools that we hope and pray will help each of us (veterans) live a more productive life knowing that if we have a flashback or nightmare we know how to handle each situation, we learn to recognize our “triggers”. A common “trigger” is the 4th of July; all the fireworks will send me back to Vietnam in a hurry. I can now go to King Soopers with my wife without getting upset at the crowds (sometimes). Below is a list of subjects/classes we are introduced to during the 7 weeks, each of these subject’s eventually tie together:
Hyperarousal & Numbing
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Acceptance & Commitment Therapy
Cognitive Processing Therapy
Readjustment after Combat
Dialectical Behavioral Training
All of the above subject/classes help the veteran build a new foundation for life AFTER graduation from the PTSD Program. The veteran must apply these “tools” he/she is taught, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make the horse drink”. I graduated on June 18th, 2009. I still have PTSD, however, my wife and I are trying to become proficient at using these newly taught tools. This is a very important program and with the large number of Vietnam Vets finally coming into the system and the dramatic increase in Gulf War, Desert Storm, OIF/OEF veterans this program is needed more than ever. As you know the expansion at Ft. Carson will bring a large number of soldiers suffering from PTSD!
As an alumnus of the PTSD Program, I was invited to be a part of the “Stakeholders Committee” at the PTSD program. We meet once a month in an effort to explore ways to improve the program. Sir, it has come to our attention that the current PTSD Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program described above may be terminated or so drastically changed veterans will NOT get the help they need. With the upcoming opening of the new VA Hospital at Fitzsimons the PTSD Program director, Dr. Lawrence Wahlberg and his staff have been consulting with “Project Eagle” by going over floor plans and the like when, to their dismay they discovered that the PTSD Program was NOT considered to occupy floor space! This is unacceptable and must be dealt with at the highest level. The PTSD Program MUST NOT CHANGE from its current format. It is imperative that this program have a space in the new hospital, to change the format of the current program will only ROB the next veteran of his/her chance for a long and meaningful life. As a Vietnam Veteran and one that was skeptical when I first entered that locked door I feel…no I KNOW I have been taught techniques (tools) on how to live out the rest of my years with the knowledge that I was a good soldier and that I am a good man, that I am NOT the monster I thought I was for the past 40 years. As you know the Vietnam Veteran was NOT welcomed home. I make every effort to welcome my Vietnam brother’s home when I see them. When I see our current soldiers receive such great treatment I feel proud that America did learn something over the past 40 years.
As a Veterans Advocate and working through the American Legion Riders I have seen what 3 and 4 tours in Iraq or Afghanistan has done to our troops. They NEED THIS PROGRAM! Please promise this old veteran and all veterans that you will do all you can to ensure that our soldiers and other veterans will have the opportunity to enter the PTSD Residential Rehabilitation Treatment Program as it is in its present format. To date over 2,500 other veterans have attended the PTSD Program.
For more detailed information please contact Ms. Carrie Thrall, LCSW, Assistant Program Manager at 1-888-336-8262 extension 4602
Claude “Butch” Chavez (Vietnam Veteran)
American Legion Riders District 8
cc: Dr. Lawrence Wahlberg, Director PRRP (Denver PTSD Program)
Lynette A. Roff, Director ECHCS (Denver VA)
Colorado Congressman, Congresswomen and Senators
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar
1 JANUARY 2010 - Thanks to all who helped these warriors - you got it done!
Pete & Brenda,
Good news, one of the Denver Congress has made an announcement that the new Denver VA will get a separate new PTSD Building next door to the new hospital. As to the date of announcement that is unknown. Congressman Perlmutters announcement stated that will be made by Sec. of Veteran Affair's once details are settled.? I was told by the PTSD Staff that they were told the number of emails and letters were overwhelming. So never doubt the power in our numbers!! Thanks for you support. Happy New Year
Butch & Pay Chavez
©WHEN YOU HEAR THE BUGLE CALL
A paratrooper’s hell…
A policeman’s nightmare…
A hemophiliac's blood...
A Christian’s faith…
A loved one's hope...
A victim’s guide…
A reader’s enlightenment…
An author's soul...
Where the seeds of understanding are sown,
Peace and justice be grown!
CLICK AUTHOR'S DEN ICON TO ORDER YOUR AUTOGRAPHED COPY
WHEN YOU HEAR THE BUGLE CALL
"THE POEM" by Peter S. Griffin
~ Dedicated to all brave warriors suffering from PCSD ~
In a dreamlike state, through a cloud of haze, I see them all,
As they solemnly march on by, “the long, the short, and the tall”…
How young and proud they were, these warriors so true,
Those who gave their lives, for the love of the red, white and blue…
How they bravely stormed the gates of hell,
My eyes glaze and tear, as I remember how they fought and fell…
How they suffered and sacrificed, how they harnessed all their fears,
How they faced our enemies, how they surrendered all their years…
These daring young soldiers, the cream of our youth,
How they glared at the gallows, how they scoffed at the noose…
In their hearts, they knew, their fight be not in vain,
For the preservation of Old Glory, worth the worry and the pain…
I wonder, to eternity they belong, why was it not my time to die?
How proud I am to have known them, to have served at their side…
As if they read my thoughts, they slowly glance my way,
Their rifles lower, barrels tilt forward, there is something they want to say…
“Brother, be it earth or heaven, we are forever bound as one,
Though different paths now taken, the difference soon be none…
As you remember us, so we remember you,
We bore the battle together, we saw each other through…
At Trail Arms, for flag and country, we march forever true,
Onward, to the front, we lead the way, for freedom to be born anew…
Until your final day at twilight, we save a place for you,
When o’er your grave the bugler sounds “Taps”, for only then, it be your cue…
Until then, you stay and spread the word, to all our brothers true,
We march forward slowly, waiting for all we loved and knew…
When reunited before our Maker, we all stand so proud and tall,
Know justice, peace and glory be near…
WHEN YOU HEAR THE BUGLE CALL
“Traumatic events such as war and terrorism shape existence for individuals in a way that forever alters the life experience. Once a person has experienced a traumatic life-altering event the world is
no longer perceived as a safe place.”
~ L. Jeannine Bookhardt-Murray, M.D. ~
IT IS .
~ From A Literary Professional ~
When You Hear the Bugle Call
Among the books about post-traumatic stress disorder as part of the aftermath of serving in Vietnam, Peter Griffin’s personal account stands out. When reading When You Hear the Bugle Call, you feel as if you are right there with Mr. Griffin, both in the actual trenches of war and the “psychological trenches” of post-traumatic stress disorder. Just as Mr. Griffin gave his all serving his country, he gives his all to his readers, thereby poignantly fulfilling his mission—to bring about a greater understanding of the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder, not only on the individual suffering from it, but also on family and friends. This book should be required reading for mental health professionals who work with the men and women who so bravely serve our country.
Sharon Lynn Bear, Ph.D.
BOOK SIZE: 8.50" X 11"
(Click above cover to order your personalized copy from AuthorsDen.com)
This book fits like hand and glove with "When You Hear The Bugle Call!"
GET BOTH! - ATTACK PCSD WITH A VENGEANCE! - CLICK BOOK COVER!
A SAMPLE FROM: "Thoughts, Memories and Tears"
WARRIORS OF THE BROKENHEART
Listen America, its time you knew,
What WARRIORS OF THE BROKEN HEART, anguish through...
In Vietnam, they gave their all,
Won their battles at Khe Sanh, Dak To and the Ashau....
In every campaign, they won them all,
Their battle histories, stand clear and tall....
Understanding this, how then, did Saigon fall?
The answer, not written, upon "THE WALL"..!
Search your heart and mind, answer true,
Protest not, your flag, of red, white and blue...
Permit your military, to fight, with hands untied,
Zero tolerance, for weak politicians and their lies...
In Old Glory's wars, Purple Hearts, are won,
Listen not to protestors as their songs be sung...!
Support your soldiers, they suffer and die, FOR YOU!
WARRIORS OF THE BROKENHEART,
Undeserved, their love so true..!
INDECISION IS OUR WORST ENEMY!
The USA didn't start the war against terror, we are defending ourselves!
DON'T DO IT AGAIN, AMERICA!
WE MAY NOT SURVIVE THIS ONE!
Afghanistan, Iraqi and all anti-terrorist warriors and combat veterans... I pray the above does not happen to you!
FROM A VIETNAM BROTHER-AT-ARMS
April 27-29, 2008
I served in Vietnam 1965-1966. My transportation company participated in the first convoy along HWY #19 that your Unit secured.
I served 30 years with the Philadelphia Pa Police Department. Mostly as a Detective in Homicide.
I am honored to be associated with you in those two paths of life. What you have done with the rest of your life is extraordinary and a tribute to those men in green in the jungle and in blue on the streets.
If anyone should know about the stress of Vietnam and what it did to the men who survived, NONE should know better than those who served with the 5 0 deuce.
You do justice to the spirits of all who did not return.
Of all of the images I have of Vietnam, the one that will stay with me forever happened on one of our early attempts at running a safe convoy. I just knew the way we were bunched, and the location on Hwy 19, that we were sitting ducks. All of a sudden, here come these young American Soldiers out of the jungle. Once things settled down, we connected with guys from the same hometowns etc. The guys were dirty and smelly. But they all exhibited a level of courage and positive attitudes about themselves that was contagious. For the rest of my tour, I was able to survive the convoy
runs, knowing "this is a cake- walk, compared to what those guys from the 5 0 deuce are putting up with." Before the deuce disappeared into the jungle, we directed them to the trucks that contained beer and liquor. I hope they gave them a quick one! On the remaining convoys we would always look for them to turn over some goodies to them. Unfortunately, we never saw you guys again. We heard you were down in Tuy Hoa.
By the way, I would have completed 30 years on the Police Dept in uniform except I was so burned out, they gave a break by promoting me to the Detective Division.
TO THE FAMILY AND FRIENDS OF BROTHER GRIFFIN
I am going to say a few things he probably never told you. Mainly, because I don’t think anyone would have ever believed him. Before the press got to Vietnam, to tell the story, there was the 5 0 duece. They were sent into the area of Vietnam where the French Mobile Group 100 made their last stand. The 5 0 deuce were sent to open a highway that the VC had controlled since running the French away. They cleared out a area that eventually, two American Divisions, (1st Cav & 25th) and one full Korean Division would take over after the 5 0 deuce left. They were the first American troops to engage VC troops in the build up stage of the war. In fact, they prepared for the buildup.In Brotherhood,
You will find little to no history of the 5 0 deuce, I found the unit mentioned in a NY Times article about the 1st Cav, (that I will send to you.) because they were there, on the ground, alone. They were very young soldiers, Black, White and Hispanic. They were Brothers in the true sense of the word. If you saw them, you could only draw strength from them.
To give you an idea what they were up against. They were the original soldiers in the area of Ia Drang, where an entire battalion of the 1st Cav would be mauled. I believe in combat, the greatest judge of your courage and fighting ability would be your adversary. Well folks, the VC in the Central High Lands had a bounty on the shoulder patch of the 5 0 deuce.
I pray that you folks will love and support this man. I, as a Vietnam Veteran, 1965-1966 can certify, that this man, and the soldiers he served with, stood up, were counted and counted anyone in a US uniform, as a member of their extended family. Without their dedication and sacrifices, many newly minted senior citizens like me, would not be here today.
Know that, Bro Grif and his comrades were taken to levels of courage taxation that few humans, in history, would have to experience. And what is so awesome about Brother Grif. He uses that experience to help others who were in similar situations. Now that really separates him from the pack.
Love and support this man. He has truly been touched by God.
It's about time the world knew what we did as young men. It is also important for the younger generation fighting in, or on their way to Iraq to know we will always support them and their war!
You have my permission to post anything I have said concerning the 5 0 deuce, who have somehow missed the history pages. I just thank God for allowing me to be a witness to some of it.
I served with guys who would not hesitate to risk life or limb, to get the troops what they needed. During Ia Drang we ran the first night convoys, fueled with the knowledge that "The 1st Cav is getting f---k-d up." I’m glad those guys are remembered.
I passed along your info to a former Philadelphia Police Officer who served with the 101st Airborne during 1968.
I met a former 5 0 deuce veteran a few years ago. I remember the block he lives on. I will attempt to locate him.
I ordered a copy of your book via Amazon.com. It will be a welcome addition to my collection.
I served with the 444th Transportation Company.
1965-1966, six months in the Nam.
I represent another group of men that history has forgotten. The short timers, i.e. draftees with 60 days or more time left until our discharge date, who were sent from stateside units, into units that were leaving for Vietnam. I was originally sent from Ft Carson Colorado where I was a gunner on a 155 split-trail, to Ft. Riley Kansas and assigned to a Infantry Unit with the Big Red One. Left Ft. Carson on Thursday, packed up to leave for Vietnam on Monday. One of the guys in my new unit heard of my travel and informed me that the Army could not send me overseas without a leave. He suggested that I contact the Red Cross, which I did. Got an immediate leave for two weeks or so. Went back to Ft. Riley where I was assigned to 444 Transportation with no experience as a driver of a 2 1/2 ton.
In the Nam, because I was new, and without experience of driving (you know the terrain of Rt #19) so guess what? I was assigned shotgun (mostly on tankers because a buddy of mine from Philly was a driver in a tanker truck outfit and his outfit welcomed me with open arms to ride shotgun) on his truck, which meant I didn't miss a convoy. It also meant I was parceled out like a free agent. I rode shotgun with a special forces team, I was assigned to a Infantry Unit that was next to go into the Ia Drang at the end of the battle, etc. But through it all, God let me see a lot of things, from Qui Nhon to Kontum, south as far as Phang Rang and north to a firebase off Hwy #1. I got to meet and interact with a lot of American heroes.
Back to the short timers… I told you of the sixty days discharge. Some men arriving with the 1st Cavalry, well their ETS (i.e. estimated time of separation – from the military) was up while The Battle of Ia Drang was going on. This Colonel sent them into the fierce battle anyway. They didn't cry, they went. Many lost their lives after their discharge dates. As a result, I am proud to have been involved in the first act of standing up in my life. We insisted and got a short timers tent. Guys with 30 days of less were assigned to the tent. They were not detailed out to other units etc. I understand from guys who served years later, that some units still allowed such tents.
Glad I could send a shout out to those guys. Many re-enlisted in the Nam.
That is the first time I gave thought to the short timers in years. Of course after the first year there were no more short timers. They are all in the senior citizens group about now. The only mention I ever saw of the short timers was in one of the Ia Drang books, either (We Were Soldiers Once or Plieku) where the author actually mentioned the courage of the draftees and the short timers who lost their lives after their ETS was up.
A lot of commanders used the "you guys will be leaving soon" excuse to have short timers used in every dangerous situation that came up. I would only guess, that many of them have bitter memories of that perceived injustice.
Doug (blue sweatshirt) talking to LT. GEN. (RET) Julius Becton at a recent book signing.
The General's impressive military career spanned from WW II -Vietnam.
(Photo by Dawn Blake, Public Relations, Haverford School, Haverford, PA.)
APRIL 30, 2008
I thank God for allowing me to be used in such a positive manner.
You want to hear something? On that convoy, when I thought we were going to get our asses tore up, I prayed (FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MY LIFE) I asked God to take care of my Family and watch over my younger brother. Then I got up to go about the business of soldiering. It wasn't long before the unit that you could have been in, or at least knew some of the men, came out of the bush. And here, years later, GOD, thru you, allowed me to reconnect that moment with someone who knew exactly what I was talking about.
I pray this will be confirmation to you, that there is a force in your life. You continue to be obedient and see the wonders he has in store for you.
Once again, Thank you so much, for allowing me to speak.
My best to you and yours,
I thank you, Doug, for your kind words and brave service in the Nam. God bless you for serving our nation's colors so proudly.
It is an honor to know you and I am both proud and pleased that you are one of The Lair's, altruistic band of brother's! HOOAH! You are one of the best! In Brotherhood, Always, Grif.
VIETNAM COMBAT VETERANS
A solemn message to convey…
"When You Hear The Bugle Call"
Will ease your sufferings both night and day,
To comfort you brave warriors who did not fall...
You unsung heroes, not named, upon “The Wall”…
For the "love of your life", please answer this call!
SALUTING OUR NATION'S BRAVE
WHERE WOULD WE BE WITHOUT THEM?
IF IT WERE NOT FOR OUR MILITARY AND POLICE
THERE WOULD BE NO CIVILIZATION!
~ AFTERSHOCK! ~
AVOID THE HELLISH ROADBLOCK!
COMBAT VETERANS OF, OR SOON TO BECOME
POLICE, FIRE, EMT, RESCUE, 1ST RESPONDERS
DOCTORS, NURSES, PARAMEDICS, SOCIAL WORKERS,
ALL MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONALS
IF YOU SUFFER FROM COMBAT PTSD
YOU NEED TO GET GRIF'S BOOKS ASAP!
HIS BOOKS NOT ONLY "TELL IT LIKE IT IS!"
THEY TELL YOU WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT!
Click covers to read reviews by Bill McDonald, President of the American Authors Association. Both books received his highest endorsement!
PLACE YOUR ORDER NOW
AFGHANISTAN & IRAQ WARRIORS
~THESE BOOKS ARE A HEADS UP FOR YOU!~
FROM A VIETNAM VET WHO CARES ABOUT YOU!
SAVE YOURSELF DECADES OF PAIN AND TORMENT!
~ TERROR AND NATURAL DISASTER VICTIMS ~
THEY WILL INFORM AND COMFORT YOU, TOO!
PLACE YOUR ORDER HERE!
When You Hear the Bugle Call
By Peter S. Griffin
Reviewed by: Grace Elting Castle
(Grif & 1st Brigade, 101st Airborne were shipped to Vietnam on "The Eltinge.")
Peter Griffin's book is not a bedtime story!
His personal story of initiation into the horrors of the Vietnam War, and his life struggles related to his battle with the resultant post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSD), is not easy to read---or to forget. He doesn't want the reader to forget. The whole point of baring his life's story, his very soul, with all the warts and embarrassment, was so that a reader struggling with PTSD, or suffering a loved one with
PTSD, might find hope and encouragement.
The editor side of me wanted to mark out portions of the book where his strong opinions and rambles appeared to lead him astray from the central theme. It took reading the entire book before I realized
that editing out those portions would have destroyed valuable evidence of the effects of PTSD.
This book, filled with angst, suffering, anger, and ultimately with the joy of a rebuilt life, may not be a book for you. It's only for those who want to understand what PTSD does to a person, for those who
want to conquer the monster PTSD, for those who want to understand and help a loved one conquer PTSD, or those who want to understand how war destroys our soldiers.
That should be ALL of us!
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