Additional Information About PTSD

"Local Veterans Retreat Uses Art Therapy to Treat PTSD"

Spokane Favs

By Tracy Simmons


The grim reaper stands on the tip of the tiny left shoe. Behind him, a soldier emerges from the white laces, fixed above three protruding nails. On the left shoe: a heart broken in half, an eye crying blood.


With some markers and a blank canvas, Brenda Spry told her story. Childhood trauma followed her into the U.S. Air Force, where more wounds were waiting. For decades she tucked it away, tried to ignore it, and slowly let it win.

"Revealing the Trauma of War"

National Geographic

By Caroline Alexander


“I THOUGHT THIS WAS A JOKE,” recalled Staff Sgt. Perry Hopman, who served as a flight medic in Iraq. “I wanted no part of it because, number one, I’m a man, and I don’t like holding a dainty little paintbrush. Number two, I’m not an artist. And number three, I’m not in kindergarten. Well, I was ignorant, and I was wrong, because it’s great. I think this is what started me kind of opening up and talking about stuff and actually trying to get better.”


Hopman is one of many service members guided by art therapist Melissa Walker at the National Intrepid Center of Excellence (NICoE), which is part of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, in Bethesda, Maryland. Images painted on their masks symbolize themes such as death, physical pain, and patriotism.

"Did Civil War Veterans Have PTSD?"

Smithsonian Magazine

By Tony Horwitz


In the Summer of 1862, John Hildt lost a limb. Then he lost his mind.


The 25-year-old corporal from Michigan saw combat for the first time at the Seven Days Battle in Virginia, where he was shot in the right arm. Doctors amputated his shattered limb close to the shoulder, causing a severe hemorrhage. Hildt survived his physical wound but was transferred to the Government Hospital for the Insane in Washington D.C., suffering from “acute mania.”

"Invisible Wounds: Phychological and Neurological Injuries Confront a New Generation of Veterans"

Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America



© 2020 Warriors Heart to Art

Images by Hamilton Studio