A Community Goes into Action to Start a Journey of Healing

Mike Foss

June 20, 2023

Last August, Alex (a new Purple Heart to the Warrior Bonfire) fell into a spiral of chaos as health issues, financial troubles, and family pressures overwhelmed him, which led to a series of threats to harm himself. Our team of staff, fellow Purple Hearts, and a non-profit partner volunteer alerted area law enforcement to step in. They had him hospitalized, evaluated, and released after six hours in Kansas. Alex proceeded to drive to Colorado where we convinced him to go directly to the Denver VA to be admitted for help. He was wanting actual help. They turned him away. Through connections of Justin (a Warrior Bonfire Purple Heart) with another organization, American Military Family, a group of Veterans physically intercepted Alex and kept him physically safe with them until they could get him placed in an in-patient facility, The Marcus Institute.

Two months later, Alex attended his first Bonfire retreat at a ranch in South Dakota. His connections made at the ranch and with the staff, volunteers, and Purple Hearts of the Warrior Bonfire, have continued to help Alex simply through communication, encouragement, and advice. Today, a year later, Alex is stable, in a home, not sleeping in his car, has a stable job, supports his family, budgeting funds, and continues to receive treatments. To other Purple Hearts, he says, “Take a leap of faith, healing starts with accepting your brokenness and asking for help”.

Further words he said after his retreat “Donate as much as you can!  For me, being surrounded by other Vets has helped me tremendously because I know they are the only ones who can help through this journey; I appreciate everything the Warrior Bonfire has done for me”.