Local organizations stress importance of mental health services as Ft. Cavazos investigates deaths of soldiers

Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 9:44 PM CDT
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KILLEEN, Texas (KWTX) - Given the recent and sudden deaths of four soldiers who served on post at Fort Cavazos this past month, local organizations are continuing to take mental health seriously.

The cause of death for these four soldiers is unknown at this time, but leaders at local organizations are stressing mental health awareness as suicide remains a leading cause of death in active-duty soldiers.

“We got to be good friends and good buddies and good comrades and watch out for each other,” says Kevin Williams, a veteran who served for more than two decades.

Williams says he knows some days it can feel like you are at war with yourself, which is why those at VFW Post 9191 in Killeen want to be a safe haven and let other soldiers know they aren’t alone.

“We have to be diligent, and ever vigilant on fighting and making sure our forces our always taken care of from a mental health perspective,” Williams explains. “We understand the challenges of our active duty as well as our veterans, male and female soldiers.”

The VFW is hosting a mental health fair in the near future because they know mental health weighs heavy on the backs of those who serve.

And that support stretches across our area, volunteers at the Veteran One Stop in Waco says their name says it all. They created a one stop shop for all soldiers who need help. The program supervisor says the number one reason soldiers don’t get help is because it can feel like a sign of weakness.

“Sometimes just asking for help feels like accepting defeat, when it’s not,” Meagan Noranbrock with the Veteran One Stop says and she adds that it shouldn’t be treated any different than your physical health. “I mean you break a bone, you go to the doctor. If something is wrong inside your head, why wouldn’t that need to be fixed as well?”

The Veteran One Stop caters to all different kinds of needs, not just mental health. But if you are looking for a resource where finances are not a factor, you can give them a call or visit their website.

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