True Story & Testimony

True Story by Dwayne Coley:

The reason I Dwayne S. Coley Sr. support MAP (Most Amazing People.” I’m a United States Marine Corps Veteran with a 32 + year history of Major Depressive Disorder. I joined the Corps at the age of 18 & left for bootcamp after I graduated from Robert E. Lee High School. Upon completion of my basic training in Paris Island, SC I reported to my station after a brief uniting with my family. I was assigned a Staff Sergeant in my 0151 Admin Clerk duties. I remember how controlling he was & the mental abuse I suffered under his supervision. He abused me mentally so deeply until I began to exhibit anger issues towards my new spouse. I started to lose sleep & dreaded going back to my station everyday. I didn’t realize the impact this treatment was having on my mental & physical health. I was so broken in spirit that I never registered the news of my wife at the time expecting my 1st child. I began to sink into a deep state of depression. I tried to cope with the uncontrolled emotions I was experiencing.

I was a Marine 1st & there was no way I was going to let anyone know of my mental suffering. I lashed out every chance I had at my wife but seeing my Staff Sergeant face each time. This had continued for sometime & my mind was starting to play tricks on me. This one evening at my command I felt very angry & a form of separation from my mind. It was just about time for my shift to end & as usual my Staff Sergeant would hold all my admin corrections to the end of my shift. I was the only Marine in the office receiving this type of treatment. I would be on my computer some 12 to 14 hours per day. I started to have vision issues due to the amount of time spent on my computer. This was back in 1984 when we didn’t have the type of advanced technology we have today. I already knew he was going to hold me back from going home, but I was already at a breaking point. He came over, tossed the pile of corrections in my basket & I felt the tension in my chest.

I had refused to take anymore of his undeserving behavior anymore. I sat for hours looking at him, look at me. I saw that smirk he possessed every time he would keep me hours after everyone else was gone. What he didn’t realize, I was mentally at a point he had to die. I felt the tears rolling down my face & all I could see was the only way out was either he die or I kill myself. Hours had passed & I didn’t realize God had a better plan. My wife had reached out to a Marine friend concerned about where I was. He picked my wife up & got her on base to my unit. When the two of them walked in, I was seconds away from my decision. She looked over at my Staff Sergeant in total discuss as she made her way over to me. When I heard her voice I snapped out of the blackness that had overtaken my mind. It was at that time I reached out for help only to be let down by the actions of the Marine Corps. I received an Honorable Discharge & on my DD214 the condition was “Personality Disorder.” I was young at age 20 & didn’t fully understand what that meant but I felt it didn’t sound good. Although I had that feeling I was just happy to get away from my abuser. I never shared my DD214 with anyone but I tried to move on as a civilian. It was 32 years later after 3 broken marriages, no relationship with my family or kids, isolation, anxiety, depression, insomnia, mental illness, health issues that I finally reached a point of Suicidal thoughts. I ended up being admitted to the hospital that I finally realized my brokenness & coming to terms with my mental illness.

I had been wronged by Veterans Affairs & the Military. After speaking with other Vets I decided to advocate for myself. I wrote my Governor of the State of FL Mr. Ron DeSantis regarding my enlistment & past 32 years masking mental illness. It wasn’t 24 hours after reaching out to his office I received contact from Veterans Affairs. Finally by the grace of God through my political representation, someone from Veterans Affairs heard my cry. They reopened my claim & changed it to the appropriate condition. I support MAP (Most Amazing People) because so many people are hurting today & more needs to be done. I pray my sharing will open your hearts to donate & support (MAP) today. http://www.MostAmazingPeople.info

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