I sometimes have been asked why I am no longer in Law Enforcement and what am I doing today. The answer has always been really simple. After I explain “My Why,” people understand and almost always have a certain respect for my life’s mission.
Being an alcoholic and drug addict for as long as I can remember was a truth that sounds unbelievable to most. When I was a kid and then eventually a man I ran on the streets, I became a subject to everything the streets offered. I worked in the nightclub business for numerous years and indulged in everything that life had to offer: drugs, alcohol, women and violence. At the time, I felt and thought “this was the life.” I started, “the life” in New Jersey and it carried over to Las Vegas in 1996.
I was truly sick and lost in a world I no longer wanted to be a part of.
Already having 18 years of “using” under my belt I applied and entered into Law Enforcement. My habits and addictions continued on through my 14 year career with The Department of Corrections and Police Department. Through those years, my life became more and more difficult which impacted my work performance in many ways.
During this time on the job, I encountered and witnessed things most people have nightmares about. I was able to cope with these issues and I thought the drugs and alcohol was just something I did recreationally. The drugs and alcohol just seemed to make life ok for me.
There came a time in 2012 when the city and Police Department I worked for was really feeling a budget crisis. The work conditions became more difficult and my struggles worsened. I had seen a handful of counselors during my career but now sought a more intensive therapy regimen. Needless to say, I eventually was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and medically retired that year.
At the time, I was elated about retirement at 41 years of age but my life soon turned into a pure hell. Everything around me started to crumble including my marriage, relationship with my parents and my will to live. The most important person in my life, my daughter suffered for sure. Trying to make the transition into civilian life wasn’t working out for me. I started “self medicating” even more and felt no purpose in life. To make a long story short, I ended up with my semi-auto 40’ cal in my hand contemplating taking my own life on several occasions. I was truly sick and lost in a world I no longer wanted to be a part of. This was something I never could or would have ever imagined.
In the fall of 2013 I entered into treatment and it changed my life completely. After leaving recovery and battling “My Demons” it gave me a sense of new life, it gave me a direction, it kept me sober which was the most important thing of all. Thank you God!
I became a part of The Warriors Heart team in 2014. This opportunity presented itself to me by the owners of the Sundance treatment center and my best friends Josh and Lisa Lannon. I had just discharged from the center a few months earlier. It was here I truly got a feel for the problem plaguing society and our country. Men and women in uniform were taking their own lives at alarming rate. I realized that my problems weren’t isolated. It was an epidemic that millions of Warriors were affected by. I knew my life’s story, struggle, and experiences could help and make an impact. This problem wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon so I wanted to take part in finding the solution. I knew I couldn’t save the world but I could do my part.
I am proud to say that today I am moving forward with Warriors Heart and helping soldiers and first responders around the country. I have been blessed by the grace of God to be able to impact so many positively in the struggle.
This problem wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon…I knew I couldn’t save the world but I could do my part.
I now know and understand “My Why.” It is what God planned for me all along. It took some self-healing to realize it. I will continue to do my life’s work until my life in body exist no more. I must fight this war at home so those who fight in our streets and overseas know that there is a place and other Warriors to fight for them.
THIS IS WARRIORS HEART