MARTINSBURG, W.Va. (WDVM) — An organization in West Virginia has a mission to help veterans across the state during their healing process.
“I will sit there and I talk to them. I tell them all about my four combat tours and everything. I’ve been in Iraq and Afghanistan, tell them what I have been through behind closed doors,” Rick Nichols said.
After serving 15 years in the military including three tours in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, Nichols says he had to overcome obstacles when he returned home. He serves as the president and founder of Berkeley County veterans which aims to support veterans in the healing process.
“A lot of our veterans are afraid to open up and talk to anyone. If you’ve never been in combat or if you have never served in an infantry field or combat arms position in the military, their struggles are a little bit different than veterans who have never seen combat, Nichols said.
Nichols says every veteran has a different story and each accompanied by some form of PTSD. He says after serving his country and seeing what his brothers and sisters have gone through, the number one priority of his organization is to let other veterans know they are not alone.
“You’re not alone. Veterans as a whole, we have all seen different stuff whether it be combat related or anything else. If you think that you’re alone, you’re not, if you think your life is worthless, its not, if you think you cant ever better yourself, you’re wrong,” Nichols said.
Nichols says his goal is to have open meetings once a month for all veterans.