Lieutenant Colonel Natalie Vines — From Hurt to Healing to Hope

“I am alive today because organizations like Semper Fi & America’s Fund support me, care for me, and give me hope.

-Lieutenant Colonel Natalie Vines 

21 years … that is how long Natalie Vines courageously served our country in the Army.

Inspired to join the military to be a part of something bigger than herself, Natalie deployed three times —to Haiti in 1995 and twice to Iraq in 2004 and 2008. On her first deployment to Iraq, she lost consciousness after being injured by a mortar blast but upon waking, continued the mission. During her second deployment to Mosul, Natalie experienced blunt force trauma to the head and lost consciousness for an hour. Due to a traumatic brain injury (TBI) and seizures, she was medevaced to Germany before returning to the States.

Natalie joined an intensive outpatient program for TBI and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) but struggled to find the hope she needed to keep moving forward. She soon gave up on treatment and even her will to live. But after Natalie was put in touch with The Fund by a fellow veteran, she said, “Semper Fi and America’s Fund reached out with open arms and hasn’t let go. The Fund means that my country still cares about ‘me’ and recognizes my sacrifices. They are my family!”

Since then, Natalie’s accomplishments have been incredible. The Fund helped adapt Natalie’s house to best fit her needs, and the unconditional love and support of her husband, Brian, have inspired her to remain very active with The Fund. She participates in The Fund’s adaptive sports program, Team Semper Fi, to stay connected to her military family and continue along her road to recovery. Her future is filled with goals to further strengthen her mind, body, and spirit, always serving as an incredible example of the journey from hurt to healing to hope.

Learn more about assistance for veterans like Natalie.

Learn more