Veterans use motorcycles, Lines for Life to cope with PTSD - KPTV - FOX 12

Veterans use motorcycles, Lines for Life to cope with PTSD

HILLSBORO, OR (KPTV) -

While returning home from war is a celebration for veterans and their families, it can also be a difficult transition.

Carl Bronson said riding his motorcycle is the best way he copes with PTSD.

In 2004, he left home to help rebuild the Iraqi Army.

“From not having any uniforms for them, or weapons, or payroll programs, maintenance programs, dining facilities, leave policy, to doing combat operations, we did it all,” said Carl Bronson.

His wife, Molly, was home while Carl was overseas. 

“Just kind of had to wait and pray, not knowing was a lot of it,” said Molly Bronson.

Molly said she only got a letter from him about once a month and phone calls were even fewer.

“I remember Christmas day he called and I had missed the call because of something going on with family and oh man I just sat and cried,” said Molly.

But thankfully, after 12 months, Carl came home. 

“Seems like it took forever until the plane arrived,” said Molly.

While the homecoming was a celebration, the transition wasn’t always easy. 

“I came back with no job and, you know, having physical problems and also coming back to where people don’t have any idea what you were going through,” said Carl.

“Just learning to find coping mechanisms, because sometimes anything can set him off and he has no idea when it’s going to happen,” said Molly.

But through those hard times, Carl found the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association.

“This is why veterans want to ride, because it’s the brotherhood,” said Carl.

Carl also started working with Lines for Life. 

“Some things I had been missing when I came back, how this organization is able to connect with people, whether it’s on the phone or messages and help them come up with coping mechanisms,” said Carl.

The Bronsons said it’s a resource that could’ve helped Carl.

"Something like that would’ve been amazing to have,” said Molly.

Carl’s now spending his time letting other veterans know about it.

"People that understand what you're going through and are receptive and give you alternatives," said Carl. 

“It gives them a place to go,” continued Carl.

FOX 12 is helping to raise money to benefit Lines for Life. To make a donation to help give a voice for veterans, visit KPTV.com/Voice or simply text "LINES" to 444999.

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