CBS Eye on Veterans | The dog and the soldier saving veterans from suicide

Eye on Veterans
September 11, 2020 - 2:05 pm
Companions for Heroes and Darlene Taylor are guests on Eye on Veterans

On this episode:

Companions for Life

Air Force veteran David Sharpe founder of Companions for Heroes

Air Force combat veteran David Sharpe lost several friends from his unit to suicide.

After the pain seemed too much, he sat down by his bed, pulled out a gun, and started to do the unthinkable. "I remember the metallic taste of the gun," he said. But seconds before he pulled the trigger, his dog Cheyenne stormed into the room and prevented yet another heart-breaking chapter in veteran history.

Inspired by the amazing dog from a shelter, he founded Companions for Heroes, an organization that pairs other veterans and first responders with life-saving shelter dogs.

During our interview, Sharpe shares his incredible story and how he was able to build the company thanks to programs from Syracuse University's Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF)

From Soldier to Saving Lives

Army veteran Darlene Taylor offers counseling to prevent suicide

After leaving the Army, Sgt. Major Darlene Taylor was afraid her life would never have meaning again. 

But after attending the Onward to Opportunity program, she found herself coaching others and using her unique ability "to care" to inspire veterans to live happier lives. She shared powerful advice for managing life and what everyone can do to help prevent suicides.

For more information about Syracuse University IVMF "Onward to Opportunity" program click here.

Syracuse University Institute for Veterans and Military Families Onward to Opportunity program

The most powerful words I've ever heard, about suicide   

Marine Corps combat veteran Kirstie Ennis talks with Phil Briggs on To War and Back podcast

When I met Marine Corps veteran Kirstie Ennis to record interviews for the 2019 podcast "To War & Back," I wasn't sure how to ask about the helicopter crash that cost the former door gunner her leg, or any of the other demons that haunted her afterward. 

But the story she shared about overcoming fear and eventually becoming a world-renowned mountain climber (who has reached the heights of Mt. Everest) began with a story about suicide -- one that I'll never forget. To this day, it's the most powerful suicide story I've ever heard, and I'm proud that we could share it in episode 4 "Noise in my Head." 

Check out all 6 episodes of To War and Back here.

And always remember, If you are in need ... you are never alone.
CALL 1-800-273-8255 (TALK) 
or TEXT Hello to 741 741

Follow Eye on Veterans Host Phil Briggs @philbriggsVet or for a joke and a smile, reach out any time