The article was about Scott Lobaido. He is an artist, and his mission to raise awareness and advocacy for PTSD. I liked that an artist wanted to do this. Since it was in Weymouth, MA there was no reason not to go.
I went the first night and talked briefly with Scott and Secretary of Veterans Services for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Francisco Urena. Scott asked me to come back the following night to talk with him more.
Talk with people and Scott
The next night was windy in a way that made recording any audio a real test. There was a guy on a Harley – Davidson Sportster named Anthony. He told me that the VA could have done more for his brother.
I never realized what it does to mother to have her child serve. Conversations like I had with Jacquelyn make me stop and consider the cost of PTSD. It is not the soldier who bears this alone. Family can be asked to pay a heavy price as well.
Scott was gracious to give me some time, and we talked about his work. His art is about conveying a feeling of pride in being an American and loving our great nation. You need to go to his website (http://scottlobaido.com/gallery/) and check out his work. Which piece is your favorite?
The last person I spoke with was Conor Sullivan. Conor is an Air Force Veteran. 19 months ago he got a heart transplant. Two weeks ago, he ran the Boston Marathon. Aim High indeed, well done Brother. Conor is a member of the Veterans Brotherhood Motorcycle Club. It was good seeing these guys at the exhibit.
Scott proves that anyone can do any thing to make change where they are. I won’t look at artists the same way ever again. Thanks Scott.
“Travis, get with Dennis Donahue, he escorted the Vietnam Wall that Heals to Weymouth.” Sometimes it goes just like that with my producer Keith Hayes aka Sinista1;) I knew the mobile Vietnam Veterans Wall was coming the Union Point, or what is locally known as South Weymouth Naval Air Station. I had already set Episode 103, so if I followed the schedule this podcast would have come out long after The Wall that Heals left Weymouth, MA. This was a problem because it could 10 or more years before this Wall came back. So Episode 103 and 104 dropped on the same day. The Wall that Heals is a mobile scaled down version of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C. and Dennis was part of a motorcycle escort from Canton, MA to Union Point in South Weymouth, MA.
Dennis served over two decades in the U.S. Army. He was deployed to Iraq and when he got out of the Army he had to adjust to civilian life. He missed the brotherhood and camaraderie of being in the Army and felt alone.
Around that time, Dennis got with the VA and 22Kill Boston to help him deal with his PTSD. He got help and started feeling better, and he was around people who cared about him. One of the ways Dennis gives back now is riding with the Patriot Guard Riders. The Patriot Guard Riders is an organization that does escorts, honor guard and funeral ceremonies for Veterans. We talked about how families and people in the community appreciate seeing the Patriot Guard Riders.
We both want everyone to go to The Wall That Heals while it is here. It is open 24 hours a day right now until Sunday, July 29th. I can’t wait to ride with Dennis and it is amazing how something like a motorcycle can help someone help someone else. Thank you for your service.
The Wall That Heals
Vietnam Veterans Memorial Replica & Mobile Education Center
Visits Union Point (South Weymouth Naval Air Stations) – Weymouth, MA