Vet with PTSD from Afgan, kills 3 family members and himself

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Re: Vet with PTSD from Afgan, kills 3 family members and himself

Post by Dameon on Sat 22 Jul 2017, 07:33

The irony for me is that this news story was the one that finally pushed my wife into pleading with me to get some help. If not for Lionel, I may not even be alive today. I realize that it is no consolidation for the family and friends, but their loss has at least saved one other person. Some stories never go away. RIP.

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Re: Vet with PTSD from Afgan, kills 3 family members and himself

Post by johnny211 on Sat 22 Jul 2017, 08:03

Ha Good on you for reaching out brother. You have come upon an awesome forum. A lot on here have ptsd and all the issues with it.
Feel free to pm me or anyone on here when you require a brother or sister to talk things out.. VVV...
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Vets’ advocates urge inquiry into Desmond case

Post by Trooper on Wed 16 Aug 2017, 06:01

Vets’ advocates urge inquiry into Desmond case



FRAM DINSHAW STAFF REPORTER
Published August 15, 2017 - 8:01pm
Last Updated August 15, 2017 - 8:41pm



Shanna and Lionel Desmond hold their daughter Aaliyah in a photo from the Facebook page of Shanna Desmond.

Surviving relatives of Lionel Desmond and veterans’ advocates are demanding an inquiry into a triple murder-suicide that left four people dead in Upper Big Tracadie last January.

Desmond family supporters are hosting a rally for an inquiry Sept. 16 at the St. Andrews District Community Centre, organizing through the Facebook group Desmondfamilytragedy A Rally For Change.

The call for action will come roughly eight months after Desmond, an Afghanistan veteran, shot dead his mother, wife and 10-year-old daughter before turning the gun on himself, with post-traumatic stress disorder a likely factor in the killings.

“This screams for an inquiry,” said veterans’ advocate Peter Stoffer.

Veterans Affairs Canada says it has already increased access to mental health services and increased frontline staffing, including the hiring of extra caseworkers, to help former service members in crisis.

But that didn’t stop the 33-year-old Desmond from murdering his loved ones about 18 months after leaving the armed forces in July 2015, having suffered PTSD-type symptoms such as nightmares and angry outbursts after a 2007 combat tour in Afghanistan.

Stoffer said the federal government had already promised to investigate individual deaths of this nature, but he added that homicides are highly unusual, even though veterans’ suicides are not.

“It is extremely rare for someone to take the lives of other people with them,” said Stoffer.

Veteran David MacLeod, who will emcee next month’s rally, called for a wholesale medical and bureaucratic review of veterans’ care to prevent such tragedies in the future.

He said wide-ranging reforms to VAC care procedures is especially urgent in a province where the ratio of veterans to population is 4,559.92 per 100,000 — the highest such ratio in Canada.

But he warned the real number could be even higher as his figures count only those former military members signed up for care services with the VAC.

In addition, Desmond was one of many veterans with a family, meaning that the ripple effect of any homicide, suicide or conditions like PTSD affects whole communities.

“When Veterans Affairs fails vets they fail the family, fail the community and actually fail the province as well,” said MacLeod.

Desmond had received some help including medication and counselling before he was released from the military, and then again from VAC in 2016 after his discharge.

But his life unravelled in late 2016 in the last months before he murdered his loved ones and killed himself.

At the time of the killings, the Department of National Defence said there would be no board of inquiry as Desmond was not a serving soldier when he died.

“There are still really good questions as to how Lionel Desmond was treated by the Department of National Defence,” said MacLeod.

“He seems to have fallen through the cracks because information provided by the Nova Scotia Health Authority indicates that physicians were trying everything they could to get help (for him) from VAC.”

VAC spokesman Marc Lescoutre said in an email Tuesday that his department has a national network of about 4,000 community mental health professionals assisting former military and RCMP members with PTSD and other operational stress-related issues.

Other services include a VAC-funded network of 11 operational stress injury clinics across Canada, peer support clinics and face-to-face mental health counselling, and referral services for veterans and their families. Additionally, the VAC Assistance Service provides 24-7 comprehensive counselling services on a variety of issues including bereavement.

VAC and the DND are also working on a joint suicide prevention strategy to be released this fall. The strategy will outline ways to improve assistance to vulnerable veterans by ensuring better continuity of care and a more seamless transition from military to civilian life.

“One suicide is one too many,” said Lescoutre. “We have to do better when it comes to suicide prevention.”

http://thechronicleherald.ca/novascotia/1494826-vets%E2%80%99-advocates-urge-inquiry-into-desmond-case
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Family of Lionel Desmond to hold rally in support of Canadian veterans

Post by Trooper on Wed 16 Aug 2017, 16:11

Family of Lionel Desmond to hold rally in support of Canadian veterans



By Alexander Quon
August 16, 2017



Cassandra Desmond, left, and her sister Chantel Desmond are seen in Antigonish, N.S. on Wednesday, June 14, 2017.

Relatives of Lionel Desmond are set to hold a rally next month in support of Canadian veterans who have yet to receive support or resources that they need.

Desmond, a 33-year-old Afghanistan war veteran, fatally shot his 52-year-old mother Brenda, his 31-year-old wife Shanna and their 10-year-old daughter Aalyiah in January, before turning the gun on himself.

Desmond’s family has said he was suffering from PTSD before the triple murder-suicide.

Cassandra Desmond, the sister of Lionel Desmond and an organizer of the event, wrote in the Facebook page of the event that they are hoping to educate not retaliate.

“For years we have been trying to prevent tragedies such as my family now suffers, but have yet to get the proper action and resources in place to get it right and continue to keep it right,” wrote Cassandra Desmond.

WATCH: Lionel Desmond murder-suicide a ‘horrific tragedy’ priest says during funeral




“When Veterans Affairs Canada fails a veteran they fail a family, a community and the province. Everyone pays a financial and emotional price.” said David MacLeod, a disabled war veteran.

“The government of Canada has studied veteran suicide since the 1990s and the government has done very little to address the situation.”


The rally is set for September 16 at the Community Centre in St. Andrews, N.S.

The event is scheduled for 12:00 to 3:00 p.m.


http://globalnews.ca/news/3673671/family-of-lionel-desmond-to-hold-rally-in-support-of-canadian-veterans/
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