Healthy Veteran Highlights • May 2024


Dear Friends of the National Center for Healthy Veterans at Valor Farm, 

As a Nation, we just commemorated Memorial Day 2024.  Speaking at a Memorial Day Commemoration in southern Virginia, I reminded participants of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address: 

“… It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for  us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us – that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which  they gave the last full measure of devotion – that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain – that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” 
Our message for Memorial Day 2024 is simple and similar:   We as a Nation honor those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice on our behalf.   For the family who has lost a loved one in the military, every day is Memorial Day. Perhaps that should be true for all of us —  every day is an opportunity to honor the fallen and give thanks for the living who continue to serve, in uniform and beyond
May 2024 is also “Mental Health Awareness Month.”  Our country is facing an unprecedented mental health crisis. The crisis isn’t just affecting adults, it is devastating young people, and people from every background including our beloved Veterans are impacted.  NCHV’s healing platform at Valor Farm and helpful programs move Veterans from mental health challenges (including the impact of military trauma such as PTSD, mTBI, Moral Injury, and other conditions) to Physical, Mental, Spiritual, Emotional and Relational WELLNESS. An example is our NCHV Patriot Resilience Curriculum which teaches Patriots to navigate adversity, escape toxic emotions, learn from life’s experiences, and grow in preparation for future challenges and opportunities. 
Here’s a preview of the content below: 

  • Plays of the Day – New Chickens, Greg Robinson Horsemanship Clinic, LU Serve Day, Boots on the Ground Class Presentation 

  • Meet the Team – NCHV Donor and Ambassador, Howard Kramer 

  • Diving Deeper – Grief: A Journey Through the Valley and Finding Hope in Christ 

  • In The Media – Homes For Heroes Presentation, Video Testimony from Kevin Curtis, Rotary Club of Forest Donation

  • Prayer Points – Massing God’s artillery on behalf of Veterans, America, and the world

These are exciting days at the National Center for Healthy Veterans.  We are seeing our Invictus and Wrangler cohorts make good progress, and preparing to welcome yet another cohort on June 19.  Our NCHV team is peddling hard and fast, encouraged by the life change we see every day. As well, we will break ground on Village 2 (another 25 homes) any week now, pending the required soil disturbance permissions from Campbell County.  
None of this would be possible without the many donors, volunteers, and organizations who support our cause to “Return Healthy Veterans to America.” We are grateful! May you “Keep Up the Fire” on our behalf!  

Blessings to each of you,

Robert F. Dees
Major General, U.S. Army, Retired
President and CEO, National Center for Healthy Veterans

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    YOUR encouragement and generosity
    have made these amazing things happen at Valor Farm. 
    We certainly welcome and need your further support on behalf of Returning Healthy Veterans to America!

    Join our Healthy Veterans Community!

    Meet The Team

    Meet Howard Kramer: NCHV Donor and Ambassador 

    This month, we’re honored to introduce you to Howard Kramer, a true American hero and a pillar of our community. Howard’s unwavering support for the National Center for Healthy Veterans is a testament to his lifelong commitment to service and his deep love for those who have served our country. Howard is married to Susan Kramer and they have two children, his business partner/CEO, Ross, and daughter, Allison. Allison is Executive Director for Now I Can Foundation Northeast, a provider of intensive pediatric physical therapy. 

    Howard’s journey began with his courageous service in the United States Army during the Vietnam War. As a rifleman, RTO, and sniper, he demonstrated exceptional bravery and skill, earning numerous awards for his heroism. But Howard’s dedication to his fellow veterans didn’t end when he returned home

    After a successful career in construction and banking, and as a co-founder of a leading digital marketing platform, Howard channeled his entrepreneurial spirit into supporting the National Center for Healthy Veterans. His generous donation of a tiny home, a place of respite and healing for veterans in need, reflects his deep compassion and desire to give back. 

    Howard’s love for country and community extends far beyond his support for veterans. He has dedicated decades of his life to serving on the Eastern Lebanon County School Board, the board of St. Paul’s UCC Church, and Schaefferstown EMS. His passion for education, faith, and emergency response speaks volumes about his character and his unwavering commitment to making a difference

    A devoted husband, father, and grandfather, Howard finds strength and inspiration in his family. His legacy of service is carried on by his children and grandchildren, who share his passion for helping others and building a stronger community. 

    We are incredibly grateful to Howard for his unwavering support and his inspiring example of service. He is a true embodiment of the spirit of the National Center for Healthy Veterans, and we are proud to have him as a member of our extended family. 

    “If everybody is thinking alike, then somebody isn’t thinking.” – General George Patton 

    “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors, there is safety.” – Proverbs 11:14

    Diving Deeper

    By: Tim Cyphers – Development Coordinator 
    Grief is a universal experience that touches every life, often leaving us feeling lost and overwhelmed. It’s a complex emotion, a journey through a valley of sorrow and pain. Here, we recognize the profound impact grief can have, particularly for those who have served our country.  
    The grief cycle, often described in stages like denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance, is not a linear path but rather a winding road with twists and turns. Some days, we may feel a glimmer of hope, while others, we may find ourselves plunged back into despair. It’s essential to remember that grief is a natural response to loss and that there is no right or wrong way to grieve.  
    In the depths of our sorrow, the Bible offers us solace and guidance. It reminds us that we are not alone in our pain and that even Jesus, the Son of God, experienced profound grief. In the Garden of Gethsemane, He cried out to His Father, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39). Jesus understands our suffering, and He weeps with us in our sorrow. 

    Throughout Scripture, we find countless examples of individuals who grappled with grief. David, after the loss of his son, poured out his anguish to God in lamentations. Job, faced with unimaginable suffering, questioned God but ultimately found comfort in His presence. These stories remind us that grief is not a sign of weakness but a testament to the depth of our love and the reality of our loss. 
    As we navigate the complexities of grief, we can find hope and healing in Christ. He is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1). He promises to be near to the brokenhearted and to save those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18). Through faith in Him, we can find the strength to endure, the courage to heal, and the hope to move forward
    At the National Center for Healthy Veterans, we are committed to providing resources and support to help veterans and their families navigate the journey of grief. We believe that through faith, community, and professional guidance, we can find healing and restoration in the midst of loss. 
    Remember, grief is not the end of the story. It is a chapter, a season, but it does not define us. As we walk through the valley, let us cling to the hope we have in Christ, who has overcome death and promises us eternal life. He is the light that shines in the darkness, and His love is the balm that heals our broken hearts.  

    Plays of the Day

    New Chickens– Valor Farm just got a whole lot bigger! We recently welcomed roughly 300 new Rhode Island Red chickens from Karlin Schrock to the farm and although they are still on the younger side, they are producing around 15 dozen eggs a day. Whether you are interested in dry-washed eggs or wet-washed eggs we have plenty! Stop by our market on 29S and purchase some today!

    Greg Robinson Clinic– We are thankful that Greg Robinson, 11-time Ranch Versatility World Champion, was able to bring his horsemanship expertise to Valor Farm! This was a rare chance to gain insights and to learn from a world-class horseman. Greg Robinson passed along amazing horsemanship lessons at Valor Farm to all those who attended (including our staff), but as always, his real lessons are about life and leadership. 

    LU Serve Day– A massive THANK YOU to Liberty University for choosing us as part of their Serve Lynchburg initiative. Their energy and enthusiasm were contagious! They made a huge difference on our campus with their hard work and dedication. We’re grateful for their commitment to serving veterans.

    Boots on the Ground Presentation– Dr. Rhonda Turner’s social work class at Liberty University recently undertook a unique project, choosing us as their inspiration. Students created a mock non-profit organization called “Boots on the Ground,” replicating NCHV’s mission and infrastructure. This hands-on experience provided invaluable insight into the inner workings of a successful non-profit, while also highlighting the important work that NCHV does for our nation’s veterans. We here at NCHV extend our sincerest gratitude to Dr. Rhonda Turner and her social work class for their hard work and dedication to our mission. 

    In The Media

    Homes For Heroes Presentation– On May 3rd we celebrated a powerful partnership! Homes for Heroes presented us with an amazing $150,000 grant, affirming their commitment to supporting veterans’ well-being. Together, we are creating a brighter future for those who have served our country. Thank you, Homes for Heroes, for your unwavering dedication to our heroes and sowing into our mission to return healthy Veterans to America! 

    Rotary Club of Forest Donation– We’re feeling the community love! A huge thank you to the Rotary Club of Forest for their donation of commercial appliances and state-of-the-art learning tables supporting our new agriculture classroom. Their generosity empowers veterans to learn, grow, and heal!

    Prayer Points

    • Pray for wisdom and knowledge to work with our Veterans who are suffering with PTS/PTSD and other mental and emotional issues.
    • Pray that the work of the National Center for Healthy Veterans would continue to advance in the criteria needed to work with Veteran Families.
    • Pray for the NCHV Staff and volunteers; continued health and stamina. Pray for their families. Praise God for the men and women He sends to continue the work of “Returning Healthy Veterans to America.”
    • Join us in praising God for the beauty of His Creation — horses, rivers, cattle, valleys, chickens, the fruit of the land, the beauty of the fields, the wonder of His Creation. 


    Weekly NCHV Schedule
      • Thursdays at 4:00 p.m. Scheduled if interested.
      • Thursdays: Community Campfire at Valor Farm 6pm Come join us for fellowship!

    MAY 2024

        • May 2, 2024 – Gen Dees addresses the National Ground Intelligent Center, Charlottesville
        • May 2, 2024 NCHV attends State of the Union of Virginia Suicide Prevention Seminar 
        • May 22, 2024 – Returning Healthy Veterans to America Reception and Fundraiser, sponsored by Hillwood, a Perot Company
          Reserve your spot by clicking here.
        • May 27, 20024 – Memorial Day Ceremony – 10am-Noon
          Roselawn Cemetery
        • May 30, 2204 – Philadelphia Veterans Appreciation Dinner – featuring Joe Piscopo, talented musicians, live auction, and NCHV patriot cameos. Union League Club of Philadelphia Reserve your spot by clicking here.

    NOVEMBER 2024

      • NCHV Veterans Day Commemoration, Guest Speaker TBD

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    Key Activities or Objectives:

    • Outbound Assessments
    • Graduate Support Programs
    • Graduation
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    The National Center for Healthy Veterans (NCHV) offers a unique career preparation course called “Jobs for Life” during the third trimester of its program. This course goes beyond traditional career counseling by integrating biblical principles to instill a deeper understanding of the nature and purpose of work. 

    Key Activities or Objectives:

    • Transition Preparation
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    Key Activities or Objectives:

    • Less Pain, Anger, Fatigue, Anxiety, and Depression.
    • More Forgiveness and Meaning
    • Better Social Participation and Connectedness
    • Quality of Life

    “The hospital fixed my body, but REBOOT fixed my soul. REBOOT sought out and resued the man I once was.”

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    This one-of-a-kind course teaches you how to build bounce, weather the storm, and bounce back without getting stuck. This course is widely used in church and academic settings to build personal resilience.

    Key Activities or Objectives:

    • Preparing for the Storms of Life
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    • Bouncing Back
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    2 Corinthians 4:8-9

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    Key Activities or Objectives:

    • Onboard & Familiarization
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    • Personal Development Plan

    Returning Healthy Veterans to America