218 E. Park Ave.
Long Beach, NY 11561
Growing up the son of an Air Force pilot, Nate knew what life in the military was like. He knew that someday he would enlist and, when he did, he wanted to become a Fleet Marine Force (FMF) Corpsman.
Between 2007 and 2010, Nate deployed twice to Iraq and once to Afghanistan with the Marines.
Nate's long-term plans for a long military career were shattered by an IED blast in Afghanistan during his third deployment.In November 2010, Nate was on foot patrol behind a Marine truck when an IED exploded just 10 meters in front of him. Knocked out by the explosion, he suffered shrapnel wounds, a fractured spine and other injuries.
Nate regained consciousness, got up and treated the other injured Marines in the truck. He returned to the United States in March 2011, and underwent a number of surgeries to treat his injuries from the IED blast. It was during this time that Nate was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD.The veteran started to think that perhaps the right companion dog could help him heal. While researching pet adoption, he learned about Pets for Patriots and the many benefits it offers veterans who save an eligible shelter dog or cat.He visited the shelter three more times before he was certain Otis was the right dog for him.
When Nate opened the car door to take Otis home, the big dog jumped inside and sat in the front passenger seat, ready to go.Otis has enriched Nate's life tremendously and has helped him cope with the symptoms of his PTSD."I've had to take a lot of medications," he says, "especially pain medications, for my injuries and surgeries. Otis has turned out to be one of the best medicines for me."