Soldiers build trust and comradery while in the military. Once they return home, the security of those bonds is sometimes lost.
However, through the nonprofit group Fallen Outdoors, a new mission is bringing service men and women back together in the great outdoors.
A day out on these Oklahoma waters gives Navy veteran Sean Ogden a sense of calm.
“It's therapeutic, it's relaxing,” he said.
He spent almost 11 years in the Navy before a medical issue forced him out.
“It was kind of difficult figuring out what I wanted to do,” Ogden said. “I didn't have a plan on getting out, it took me a while to get my grips on that.”
Through the national nonprofit groups, he met Cody Kelly, a fellow veteran who understands.
“A lot of the guys struggle with leaving that structure that they had in their lives and knowing what they were going to do every day, what they were going to wear, where they were going, now they're just kind of out there on their own,” Kelly said.
The group brings veterans and active military members together for a little fun and therapy through organized hunting and fishing excursions across the state.
“Some of them just stay inside, they don't do anything and what we're trying to do is get them out of that, get them back out and get them comfortable,” Kelly said.
It's what Odgen said helped him tackle his new civilian life.
“I've met some outstanding people, probably lifelong friends,” Ogden said.
The group goes on about 30 excursions each year and holds several fundraisers. The next one is on August 11, when Fallen Outdoors Oklahoma Chapter will host its first annual clay shoot. The group needs shooters and sponsors. If you would like to help out, just contact Cody Kelly at (405) 659-2621.
To sign up for the event, click here.