Parsons Woman Starts New Veterans Organization
22 soldiers commit suicide every day, many struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder or other disabilities from combat. A Parsons woman is raising money to help local veterans get the help they need.
Troy Arratia helps serve biscuits and gravy to fellow veterans. He says there aren’t enough services available to those that may be struggling with PTSD.
“To know what they’ve seen and to come back and to pretty much have the door shut on you, that’s what they’re facing now. I personally know 2 guys in my life that have taken their lives and I think it’s a tragedy. I don’t think that we do enough for veterans ,” says Arratia a U.S. Army Veteran.
He was never deployed overseas but his wife was. He says it’s hard for even him to understand what combat veterans deal with. That’s why he volunteers with Sonya Johnson to show warriors they have a support system.
“We have vets that are turned away from the VA hospital and then they turn around and will commit suicide. I want to see what i can do to help prevent that ,” says Johnson, creator of the organization Carry a Warrior.
Soldiers returning from war will never forget the battles in which they fought. Johnson wants local veterans to know the community hasn’t forgotten them.
Her son Channing inspired her to start the organization Carry a Warrior . He’s in the Army and stationed at Fort Drum in New York.
Her first fundraiser will provide support to those living with PTSD.
“They carry us in the military so we need to give back and do the same thing ,” she says.
Johnson says she will build up her organization so that she can give as much as possible . For now, she is working with the Elks Lodge in Parsons but plans to establish Carry a Warrior as a nonprofit.
“I hope when they leave here they know people do care and appreciate the sacrifices they’ve made ,” she adds.
Sacrifices in their lives, for our freedoms.
“Look at what they do for us. They give us the right to the freedoms we have here. They deserve everything in my book ,” says Arratia.
They raised $1,365 this morning.