YELLVILLE, Ar -- Help is coming for those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has expanded since 9/11. The Navy and Marine Corps spent nearly $90 million on psychological health just last year.
But one man believes it is not enough and he is doing something about it. In the past year alone the number of diagnosed cases of PTSD in the military jumped 50% and that's just diagnosed cases. That's why a retired Lieutenant Colonel is taking action. He created Prjoect Valhalla--helping those coming home from combat and giving them a place to find a little balance.
Retired Lt. Col. Gorgon CuCullu has quite a resume. "Did the airborne. Special forces training. I did about 15 months in Vietnam and was assigned to the Pentagon in the office of the Secretary of Defense."
Now he faces one of his biggest challenges yet. "What the elements and environment of combat are like are so different than what they see at home," Lt. Col. Cuculllu said.
It's called the Valhalla Project. "When you get back to the civilian world," he said, "things are moving at what seems to be an unacceptably slow pace for the veteran."
It's two hundred acres in the middle of No Where, Arkansas. It's completely dedicated to helping soldiers returning from combat readjust.
"These are people who have had a weapon by their side for more than a year."
It not just a weekend resort in the Ozarks. "The only price of admission we ask of the soldiers is four hours of work a day." It's a place to learn, to work, and decompress. "What we want to do in effect is give them a soft landing," he said.
Right now the project is in the very beginning. "It is a 100 year project and we mean that literally."
Big plans are on the horizon.
"What we want to do here is give them focus, productive indoor and outdoor work--where they can interact with intensive gardening, with off the grid construction, with a variety of livestock and poultry."
More than 1.2 million veterans are dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder--nearly a fourth of those are coming back from Iraq and Afghanistan. "They have a sense of defensiveness, they have a sense of heightened alert. One feeds the other."