Talk about a road trip!
Staff Sergeant Michael Randle, who is stationed at Ft. Bragg, is on the return leg of a 5700 mile motorcycle ride from North Carolina to San Diego and back, to help raise awareness for veterans about the services which are available to those with emotional challenges, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
"Every veteran, every person with any type of emotional need, or any need for that matter, there are resources out there and I'd like to link them into those resources, or just bring awareness to those resources that are out there to help," he said.
SSGT Randle stopped in San Antonio, as he has stopped at other cities with significant concentrations of veterans, to make sure they are aware of the services in every city that are available for veterans with PTSD and other conditions.
As many as half of all U.S. veterans with PTSD, estimated at one in five Iraq and Afghanistan War veterans, do not seek treatment. Many reject their condition or think it will improve by itself, others aren't aware of the treatment that is avaialble.
Between 11% and 20% of veterans who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom also have PTSD.
Randle says such an intense solo trip across the country can result in mind games."Two days ago, I was hullucinating, and that was a pretty bad one," he joked. "I was thinking, I'm going to hit rain. Then I realized, no, that's just the curb, just keep going..."
He says the biggest drawback of traveling alone is that camping by yourself is no fun, but other than that, he says he has seen the best of America.
He says anybody can fly into an airport, but to ride through the fields, woods, and back roads is to have a true appreciation of the wonders of America.