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Veterans Come from All Over…

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A disabled veteran changes after a game of sled hockey at the Aspen Ice Rink in Aspen, Colo., during the National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic, April 4, 2007. Photo: William D. Moss [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Supposedly war is on the downswing – meaning, there are fewer wars and fewer deaths as a result of war than in recent years. Perhaps this is a good thing. Still, we have veterans, and they come from all over…

Veterans make up over 12 percent of the homeless population in the US…

Since the 15th Century, there has been no stretch of 25 years without war somewhere in the world…

The NATO attack on Serbia in 1999 killed more animals than soldiers…

Women comprise between 15 – 20 percent of active duty military personnel in the US…

There are currently over 2 million female veterans in the United States…

Many homeless veterans who live on the streets wind up living on those streets for up to 10 times as long as their military deployment…

The Bradford County Veterans Memorial Park in Towanda, Pa. Photo: Public domain.
The Bradford County Veterans Memorial Park in Towanda, Pa. Photo: Public domain.

The song “Brothers in Arms,” written by Dire Straits lead singer Mark Knopfler, was about war in the Falklands – the British controlled territory of islands off the coast of Argentina. The British lost over 250 soldiers defending their rule of the islands. In 2007 an updated track of Knopfler’s song was released to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Falklands War. Proceeds from the sale of the single were used to fund a program that took British soldiers back to the battlegrounds of the Falklands, in an effort to assist many of them coping with the effects of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)…

Coping with the effects of war is an easily overlooked part of our society. Yet, the veterans who sacrificed their lives for our freedoms, including our freedom to participate and enjoy in sports, are the very last people in our society
who should be overlooked. Regrettably, however, they often are…

Sports for veterans is an important part of the liPrintves of those fortunate enough to be able to participate. It is one of the single most successful programs for rehabilitating veterans and enhancing their abilities, not only to re-enter mainstream society, but also to live in the mainstream as seamlessly as possible. Check out their webpage for more information, available by clicking here.

References

“America’s wars” (2016). Available: http://www.va.gov/opa/publications/factsheets/fs_americas_wars.pdf

“Brothers in Arms” (2016). Available: http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=2549

“Facts about War” (2016). Available: https://didyouknow.org/fastfacts/war/

“Facts about veterans” (2016). Available: https://www.dosomething.org/facts/11-facts-about-veterans

By Dr. Rodney J. Blackman

Dr. Blackman is the Chair of Recreation Management at the United States Sports Academy, and can be reached at rblackman@ussa.edu.

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