Health & Safety

November 15, 2013

Military Working Dog Instructor rides for recovery

Staff Sgt. Brent Olson, 99th Ground Combat Training Squadron military working dog instructor, completes the honor ride and grabs a medal during the Ride 2 Recovery Honor Ride Nov. 9 on the Las Vegas strip. The Honor Ride hosted more than 500 riders to cycle a 39-mile course.

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — “Making a difference in the lives of healing heroes” is a motto the Ride 2 Recovery organization members live by and one that Staff Sgt. Brent Olson, 99th Ground Combat Training Squadron military working dog instructor, set out to honor during the Las Vegas Ride 2 Recovery Honor Ride Nov. 9.

Olson is a part of TEAM BLEK, in honor of Military Working Dog Blek, who was patrolling with him through a known hostile village in Kandahar, Afghanistan, when they were both struck by an improvised explosive device.

Olson and MWD Blek had been engaged off and on in a number of skirmishes and located 17 IEDs on their third day of patrolling Sept. 13, 2010. At approximately 9 p.m. while clearing the last structure in their sector, an adversary triggered a pressure plate IED that initiated four other devices leaving three killed in action and 13 wounded in action, including Olson and MWD Blek, who were both transported to the Kandahar Airfield hospital where they began their recovery.

The Ride 2 Recovery Honor Rides mission is to improve the health and wellness for wounded, injured or ill servicemen and women with cycling as the core activity. It gives the public the opportunity to ride with healing heroes and enlisted military on a non-competitive, fun ride. In Olson’s case, the opportunity presented itself as a 39-mile bike ride through the Las Vegas cityscape.

“All this is for a good cause,” Olson said. “It’s honorable to be with other wounded warriors who are on the same path of recovery.

“My experience was great. I’m a very passionate person when it comes to certain things, and this was a good one. I was very pleased on how well I did. I proved something to myself.”

Olson didn’t participate in the endeavor for himself, but rather for others who are likewise recovering or have made the ultimate sacrifice.

“It’s all about the people next to you,” Olson said. “I [didn’t] even do it for me, I dedicate it to the people that died or never came back.”

Tiffini Skuce, Ride 2 Recovery social media representative and photographer, sees Olson’s reason for participation to be exactly what Ride 2 Recovery is trying to emphasize.

“Olson’s story is exactly what Ride 2 Recovery is about, healing and growing,” Skuce said. “Riding a bike is a great way to exercise, but riding a bike at a Ride 2 Recovery event lets you ride with your fellow veterans building camaraderie and motivation to keep riding. The person next to you might be missing both legs, but he or she is still out there on a bike, providing inspiration.

“We ride as groups so people can get to know other riders, share stories, build friendships and find advice about things only other injured service members can relate to,” she added.

Olson believes that those who are recovering should pace themselves during recovery and not give up.

“Take it a day at a time,” Olson said. “I think that’s a lesson I still deal with today. Get help, and don’t be afraid to ask or find someone you can connect with.”

Olson was able to adopt MWD Blek in 2010 and hasn’t left his side since.

“I love that dog, you know … I love that dog more than anything,” Olson chuckled.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr.

First sergeant provides health, welfare for warriors

U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Charles Larkin Sr. Master Sgt. Phelipe Salinas speaks to his athletes during the 2014 Warrior Games at the Garry Berry Stadium in Colorado Springs, Colo., Oct. 2. Salinas is the first sergean...
 
 

Safeguarding, re-evaluating your digital footprint

SAN ANTONIO, Texas — Social media is a great resource for Airmen and their families to share information and stay connected to relatives at home and abroad. Although many depend on these wonderful tools, recent events have encouraged us to re-evaluate our digital footprint to ensure our personal and professional information is protected from online...
 
 

October is Energy Action Month: ‘I am Air Force Energy’

NELLIS AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. — Summer has come to a close, and we’re all looking forward to more tolerable temperatures in the coming weeks. Even better news — this means your power bill is likely to go down. But if you think you pay a lot for energy, imagine paying Nellis’ bill of approximately $1 million...
 

 

Taming ‘tyranny of urgent’

VANCE AIR FORCE BASE, Okla. — Many Airmen lead incredibly busy lives, full of unfinished tasks that we often wish we had more hours in the day to fit it all in, and in our professional lives, budgets remain tight, the Air Force is shrinking, and we are challenged to do more with less. Yet...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis

Armory: A home for weapons

U.S. Air Force photograph by Airman 1st Class Rachel Loftis Senior Airman Jaime Romo, 99th Security Forces Squadron armorer, puts a M-240 rifle away after clearing the weapon at the 99th SFS armory at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo

Nellis Open House brings history to life

U.S. Air Force photo The AT-6 Texan, which was originally flown in 1935 and flown here in the 1940s, will be one of many aircraft at the Nellis Air Force Base Open House on Nov. 8 and 9. It is a single-engine advanced trainer a...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin