Hello again to all my friends, family and supporters and of course anyone just tuning in… Welcome!
Today was another day of me beating the pavement in Washington D.C., and continuing my current mission, which is bringing awareness of the PTSD issue to our nations elected leaders. And it was all worth it because I did get some pretty good news today… please read on!
Again I must mention my hosts while I am staying in the D.C. area, they are Gary and Mary Ann Shaffer (who are very nice people, thank you once again for your generosity!)
Somehow the Shaffers’ arranged a meeting for me with two of their local political representatives; Virginia Senator Jim Webb, and Virgina Congressman James Moran. Nice work folks!
Sooo, first thing in the morning I returned to the Capital.
My first stop was Virginia Senator Jim Webbs office and of course Senators are very busy men I understand, and I was not able to speak with Senator directly. I did however speak at length with the Senator’s Legislative Correspondent Patrick Day.
Next it was on to Virginia Congressman Jim Moran’s office, but Congressmen as well as Senators are understandably busy men I know, and I was not able to speak with Congressman Moran directly. Luckily I was able to make my presentation to the Congressman’s Military Legislative Assistant, Christopher Gaspar, and I think he definitely listened to what I had to say.
When I had completed my presentation to Mr. Gaspar, he even asked me what OTHER ISSUES I was concerned about concerning veterans, and I was able to address several other important ideas including veteran homelessness, and the need for family support.
Another quick stop for me today was the office of Congressman Adam Smith, of Washington State’s 9th District. Unfortunately I was not able to speak with the Congressman himself but I was able to connect with his Legislative Assistant, Brian Garrett. I thank Mr. Garrett attentively hearing my presentation.
Next stop: I had no appointment and I am but a former resident of Ohio, so I took a chance and stopped by the office of Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich and they welcomed me.
Even though the Congressman was in a meeting when I arrived, his assistant encouraged me to wait. After about 20 minutes Congressman Kucinich did come out and speak with me for a few minutes and pose for a picture…
But this is the best part, get this… Congressman Kucinich is going have a staff member write a letter documenting what I have done, why I have done it, and HAVE IT READ TO CONGRESS!
And to top that off it will also be ENTERED INTO THE CONGRESSIONAL RECORD!
Wow, this is just amazing… I want to thank Congressman Kucinich, and his whole staff including Diala Jadallah who interviewed me about my March for PTSD and will write the letter that will be read in Congress.
This action by Congressman Kucinich will officially document and set in the official United States Congressional Record my achievement, and my opinion about PTSD, as well as the opinion of the hundreds of supporters that I proudly represent and have been privileged to meet along my way.
This is a such a wonderful gesture by Congressman Kucinich and his entire staff and I am very thankful for their attention to this matter.
Whew… with the hard work done today and with a feeling of accomplishment, I headed out to do a little sightseeing. The weather today in D.C. was rainy and cool, so that meant that the outdoor monuments had hardly any people at them… and the indoor attractions were quite crowded.
I was able to take in quite a few popular Washington D.C. sites including…
- The National Museum of the American Indian
- The National WWII Memorial
- The Vietnam Veterans Memorial
- The Korean War Veterans Memorial
- The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
After sightseeing it was a quick train ride back to Alexandria and the Shaffer’s house to prepare for an early flight back to Desdemona in the morning.
Slowly it is sinking into my head that this is the end of my March for PTSD.
Interestingly enough, by airplane I will cover my 1500 mile route in 2 or 3 hours instead of 2+ months…
But nobody can make a difference by just taking a airplane ride… and that’s what I have attempted to do with the March for PTSD is make a difference. I can now say I have done my best, and at this point I can only hope that I have succeeded in making some kind of change.
I am thankful I will be home for the Thanksgiving holiday, and I am certainly looking forward to being home in Desdemona with my wife, eating some good home cooking and sleeping in my own bed after being on the road for over two months…
Thanks for tuning in and checking up on me my friends… I’ll let you know when I make it home and safe and sound back to Desdemona, Texas after the completion of this amazing journey.