Adam Magers is a Jacob’s Weller and Iraq Veteran who served in Baghdad in 2007-2008, and recently started an organization called The Warriors’ Hope Project. Struggling with overwhelming fear, stress, anxiety, and panic in the year after he returned from Iraq, Adam ultimately found hope and healing–initally through an understanding of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and ultimately through the stories and comfort of others like him. That’s why he started the Warriors’ Hope Project.
“What Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans need to know is that they have every reason to be hopeful. Our present struggles are helping us grow. We are being shaped into people who are stronger and more compassionate than we were before. We are capable of doing more good and helping others. We are still capable of service. We can adapt and overcome the troubles we face. “
In the Stories of Hope category, Adam tells his story in great intimacy and powerful detail, revealing the destructive behaviors and dark thoughts he faced daily after returning from the war–and how he overcame them. Second is the personal story of Herb Suerth, Jr., a living member of the famous Band of Brothers 101st Airborne Division in World War II. More stories from soldiers who’ve fought in many wars of our time will be shared over coming weeks and months.
“We have a lot of lessons that we can learn by the examples of the combat veterans who came before us. By looking at what has helped other veterans cope with PTSD, we can draw from their experiences and allow them to inspire us. Their stories can give us hope. The men who overcame the Nazis, defeated the Empire of Japan, fought in Korea and battled the Viet Cong have led the way. We have bravely followed their examples in combat and fought our own, incredibly difficult wars. The example they have set after coming home is one we must pay attention to. Here at The Warriors’ Hope Project, we will hear their stories of perseverance. We, like the veterans of the wars of the past, must never give up, and never surrender.”
Another JW’er has been involved in telling these stories, through a BBC Documentary called “Life After War: Haunted by Helmand”. In July 2009, the British army suffered the single worst attack on a foot patrol in the history of the Afghan campaign when five men from the same platoon were killed by IED explosions, and many more were injured. This one-hour film tells the emotional and touching stories of some of those who survived that attack but who have struggled to come to terms with what they saw. The film was produced by Michael Price who recently moved to Kansas City from England and attends Jacob’s Well.