Wednesday, March 15, 2017

TOP STORY >> Commander visits posts

Leader staff writer

American Legion National Commander Charles Schmidt made stops at the Cabot Legion Post 71 and the Beebe Legion Post 91 on Monday during his tour of posts around the state. 

Schmidt, of Hines, Ore., retired as an Air Force major after a 28-year career in the military.

During his visit at the Cabot Post, Legion member Andrew Johnston asked what was being done to try to prevent suicide among veterans. 

Schmidt said it is a tough challenge for everybody. It is hard to say why some veterans commit suicide. Maybe it’s a result of their military service, combat, post-traumatic stress disorder or brain injuries. 

“We prefer the VA take on alternative medicines and treatments; some have said marijuana or cannabis. Some studies have said that there are elements within cannabis that are of value. The American Legion supports further study of cannabis to see if there is something to come out of it that is positive other than addictive,” Schmidt said. 

He said a lot of places have service-dog programs that help veterans. In Oregon, there are fishing-buddy programs that takes veterans out.

Schmidt said Oregon is trying to get them off the pills and help them get treatment another way.