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Montana veterans find healing through equine therapy - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

Montana veterans find healing through equine therapy

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Lloyd Bondy is one of millions of veterans who served our country honorably, but he now lives with PTSD from when he was in the U.S. Air Force. Lloyd Bondy is one of millions of veterans who served our country honorably, but he now lives with PTSD from when he was in the U.S. Air Force.
Lloyd has found healing thanks to Vets Valor, a nonprofit organization offering equine therapy Lloyd has found healing thanks to Vets Valor, a nonprofit organization offering equine therapy
KALISPELL -

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs reports that while veterans make up less than 9% of the country's population, they account for 18% of all suicides.

There is hope for them in Northwest Montana where horses are helping them heal.

Lloyd Bondy is one of millions of veterans who served our country honorably, but he now lives with PTSD from when he was in the U.S. Air Force.

"I feel sick when I wake up and I've woken up in sweats where there is an outline of me in the bed, but the worst of them is I get all kinds of nightmares," Lloyd said.

But Lloyd has found healing thanks to Vets Valor, a nonprofit organization offering equine therapy to veterans and first responders in Northwest Montana.

For Lloyd and other brave veterans and first responders like him, Vets Valor offers the equine therapy at no charge, with hope it will help heal their invisible wounds.

"When I come here, I feel relaxed, I feel like I'm on top of the world," Lloyd said. "I mean, it's great to work with these big creatures. I thrive on personal connection and also the connection with the horse."

"We can all heal, there is no time frame on healing," says trainer Stacia Stevens. "It is a process and as long as we stay as consistent as we can, we're all going to get through it."

Three veterans are now receiving therapy at the ranch, but Vets Valor says they hope to increase that number to 25 and eventually purchase their own facility.

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