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Richard's Story

Posted on: in [ Recipients in Need ]

Donation Goal

$7,500

Hi.  My name is Richard Tudor and I am a member of the United States Marine Corps.  I served from age 17 to age 24 (1983-1990). I am a proud American and wanted to give back to my country.  I was in the infantry; a motorman and machine gunner.  I was a rifle instructor at Parris Island.  I traveled all over the world, and if there was a conflict, I was on the other side of the world.   I was medevacked from the Mediterranean Sea to Italy and then Spain and then to Walter Reed and Bethesda after suffering a depressive break.  While in there a doctor came to me privately and said take this pill it will help you.  I later had a psychotic break.  Since then I have been suffering from bi-polar schizoid-affective disorder and PTSD.  It took me 26 years to finally get a medical discharge. 

I usually wait in the truck when my wife goes shopping, and I cannot enjoy each day as my mind is still going back to my stay at Walter Reed.  I have paranoia, hear voices tell me to get out of here, and am very anxious and have trouble being around people.  My wife, who is now my official caregiver, and I have been married 13 years.  With her beside me I could enlarge my environment.  That is a 24/7 job.

I heard about RFI at a DAV meeting.  I spoke with another disabled vet and he helped me to get the process started.  I was able to fly to Iowa with my wife to visit the RFI there, and the dogs were so soothing.  I felt at peace and was able to enjoy each moment.  I was able to work with a dog for about 20 minutes.  The experience was so peaceful and brought many untroubled smiles.

Since being accepted, I will travel to Missouri to begin working with my dog.  I will begin a friendship that will give me unconditional love and protection.  I am hoping to reduce my every day nightmares and the number of pills I have to take.  I hope to be able to go into stores and not feel someone is watching me; when I'm anxious, I hope my dog will have my back and I’m not having to look all around me to see if someone is watching me.  I am hoping my dog will decrease my daily paranoia as I will feel safer.

I am so relieved to have been accepted with RFI, and I can now see hope for my future.  I will be able to go into stores with my wife and go off in a different direction knowing my dog has my back.  I was discharged from the USMC seeing a different world that scared me and I didn’t know how to cope except through many, many medications.  My dog will take away my fear.

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