Veteran wilderness therapy, nordic skiing comes to Carrabassett Valley
WABI | by Ben Barr | February 2022 | Link to Article
CARRABASSETT VALLEY, Maine (WABI) – Veterans from across the country enjoyed a sense of community with a Nordic ski trip in Carrabassett Valley with the Semper Fi & America’s Fund.”Once you realize that there are a lot more people out there like you and doing things for fun like this to help other people that helps us out a lot,” said Clint Van Winkle, Marine, initial Iraq invasion.The fellowship provided benefits for veterans who have even been suffering from conditions you can’t always see, like traumatic brain injuries and post traumatic stress disorder.”Most people’s disabilities aren’t visible, so people think they’re not suffering, but they really are. It’s really nice that these events have such camaraderie with the people you tell things you normally don’t tell your therapist half the time,” said Wendy Clough, Marine, Maine native.Henry Escobedo suffered several concussions and was diagnosed with PTSD and Leber’s Optic Neuropathy. Although he’s lost his vision, he was still able to enjoy the experience.”I always give credit to those individuals that are beside me, making me feel comfortable and secure doing the sport. That’s what Maine had to offer,” said Escobedo, Army infantryman.Michael Cataldi went from weighing 327 lb. to just 175 lb. during his PTSD recovery journey. He said he has an outdoors background working as a veterinary assistant and training for marathons, but the ski trip still reinvigorated his love for the outdoors.”This one event that the fund put on has reignited my passion for going outdoors. This ski trip with this group of veterans has given me a spark again,” said Cataldi, Marine, medically retired, Maine native.You can learn more about the Semper Fi & America’s Fund by visiting www.TheFund.org.Copyright 2022 WABI. All rights reserved.