Author Topic: Until Tuesday  (Read 14922 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline Erin-Michael

  • Loquacious Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 837
  • Location: Hampton Roads, VA, USA
  • Mood: Vulcans have no moods
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #15 on: April 06, 2013, 12:42:00 AM »
QueenSnappy, well from those accounts it certainly looks bad for him but my natural tendency is to give our walking wounded the benefit of the doubt.  I have seen too many guys get the you're faking it treatment from our government and our Veterans Administration and it sickens me.  I will say that he deserves what he gets if it is ever concretely proven that he lied about his initial claim.  Oh, and thank you for posting that link!!!!

LolaMarigolda, I have seen too many screw-ups from our bureaucracy to rely on their record keeping.  I mean, sure, if you need to blow your nose the day after Kleenex goes under it is invaluable, but otherwise it is useless.  As for his fellow troopers, well memory is a funny and fickle thing and is very unreliable under duress.  That they remember it differently, with a few key facts being the same, does nothing to make either party a liar.  Again, I will refrain from making judgement on this one but it does appear to me that his story is a little more flimsy than it was before.

Moonfall, thank you and I will look into that book!!!
Erin, Michael and Duke
"I'm not crazy, I am just misunderstood!"
LORD OF THE FLIES!!! CONQUERER OF ALL WORLDS!!!

Offline Kirsten

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 39455
  • Have a flufftastic day!
  • Location: Missouri, USA
  • Mood: Okay
  • SDC interest: owner-trainer
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #16 on: April 06, 2013, 12:50:29 AM »
I'm inclined to take the multiple accounts from members of his own platoon, posted by themselves on forums, very seriously.  But I didn't find out about those until after I realized he did not represent us well as a handler.  It was the garbage lid case that tipped me off and the more I looked into it, the more disappointed I became.  He appears to be a person who is very much more interested in being the center of attention than advocating for others who need service dogs as he claims.  He makes his livelihood off of the stories he tells and and notoriety.  He runs to the press any time he can possibly construe some conflict over this dog whose training has been ruined by his use of her as a prop for speaking engagements.  At a recent book signing, SDiTs in the audience were significantly better behaved and better handled than his dog was.  She wandered the room, sniffing other dogs and soliciting attention from audience members and ignoring his half hearted commands to come.
Kirsten and Tardis
In loving memory of Cole (1/11/99 - 6/26/12)  He gave me back my life.

"The one absolute, unselfish friend that man can have in this selfish world -- the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous -- is his dog." -George G. Vest

Offline QueenSnappy

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 8235
  • The Queen of Snappy Comebacks
  • Location: Planet Earth
  • Mood: Exhausted
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #17 on: April 06, 2013, 08:00:59 AM »
I had some personal interactions with him on FB - when he deemed me "worthy" of being in his inner circle of a service dog group that he has over there.  One day he got on there ranting and raving about a doctor's office in Manhattan, NY.  It was a doctor who rented office space in one of the many huge high rises there. 

Anyway, he started ranting and raving about the person at the check in desk at this high rise.  He went up - gave the name of the doctor he was supposed to see - wrote his name on the check list - and the girl working the desk - perhaps in poor taste, but she said "Oh, a service dog?  You have to go up in the service elevator."  It was likely something said in jest.  He flipped.  I mean - totally flipped on her.  Took her name, her supervisor's name, the name of her employer.  He went to his doctor's appointment, came home and started his campaign to get her fired.  He was relentless - he was like a bull in a china shop.  He would not let it go.  He told the employer that he would file a lawsuit and make sure that they were "bankrupt, just like he did to McDonald's".  Two days later, he got on FB and gloated -- his lawyer had received word that the woman was fired and the organization that he got his dog from, got a donation of $10,000.  He gloated about the fact that she had three kids and would likely never find a job again. 

A week before that he had been in Florida on one of his speaking engagements and had to visit the Miami VA.  They asked him for his military ID and they inquired about the dog.  He flew off the handle and started squawking about his rights and did they know who they were dealing with.  I know that he has some sort of ID for his dog that allows him in VA hospitals with the dog.  He went nuts on this person.  He started making a really huge scene and got himself taken into custody for a disorderly conduct type thing.  He claimed that when they put the cuffs on him, he had bruises and it caused his neck and back all kinds of issues.  He posted pictures of the bruises on his hands - or the supposed bruises on his hands.  Someone pointed out that there was a tattoo on one of the hands - a gang tattoo.  He took a random picture off the internet and wasn't even bright enough to pick one that looked remotely like his hands. 

It was only a few days later that he banned Katherine and gave me a "warning".  When he called my friend - and my family member here on SDC "not of sound mind", I was outraged and horrified.  I don't care who you are, that does not give you the right to call someone that just because they disagree with you about a fundamental fact of service dog life - that a service dog cannot ever show aggression.  He is advocating - quietly right now - but that service dogs be allowed to have protection training.  Can you see the absolute disaster that will occur from that?  We have enough issues with fakers, but fakers with dogs that are allowed to attack?  That is an unmitigated disaster - of epic proportions. 

And as far as his Purple Heart goes -- I will only put it this way -- my son just graduated from BCT on Thursday.  For those following his saga, during week five, he was injured, badly.  He was on crutches for two weeks and at that point, he was almost discharged from the Army.  He was told that because we are technically still at war, he was eligible for a Purple Heart.  He hadn't even finished one third of BCT, and they told him he would get one.  That disturbed me.  The Purple Heart has lost its meaning because of jerks like him.  That saddened me to no end. 

This guy is a fraud from the word go - but worse - he is a highly public person and is a fraud on top of it. 
Follow Diva on her Official Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Gretltheservicedog

Offline NEROtic

  • Official Welcomer
  • *
  • Posts: 5404
  • Hedy and Nero
  • Location: Colorado, US
  • Mood: Happy
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #18 on: April 06, 2013, 08:30:11 AM »
He gloated about the fact that she had three kids and would likely never find a job again. 

What makes him think that is acceptable?!  I think I hate him even more now.  That poor woman absolutely had the right to file legal action against him for defamation of character.
Quote from: A Whimsical Observer
Studies show trees live longer when they're not cut down.
Nero- Quality Custom Dogwear
https://www.facebook.com/nerodogwear

Offline Erin-Michael

  • Loquacious Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 837
  • Location: Hampton Roads, VA, USA
  • Mood: Vulcans have no moods
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #19 on: April 07, 2013, 07:04:26 AM »
  Two days later, he got on FB and gloated -- his lawyer had received word that the woman was fired and the organization that he got his dog from, got a donation of $10,000.  He gloated about the fact that she had three kids and would likely never find a job again.   

You convinced me QueenSnappy, that is just wrong on so many levels!!
Erin, Michael and Duke
"I'm not crazy, I am just misunderstood!"
LORD OF THE FLIES!!! CONQUERER OF ALL WORLDS!!!

Offline Erin-Michael

  • Loquacious Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 837
  • Location: Hampton Roads, VA, USA
  • Mood: Vulcans have no moods
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #20 on: April 07, 2013, 07:28:55 AM »
QueenSnappy, you have convinced me about Montalvan but your son was misinformed about the Purple Heart Award.  The military requires that the injury be acquired by the actions of recognized enemy agents.  That said, a LOT of people in the military don't seem to know the regulations these days, and I say that as someone who is a civilian admin person for the Navy.  That said, tell your son that we appreciate his service and his willingness to stay in after his injury!!  He is certainly hope for America's better days

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Purple_Heart#Criteria
Erin, Michael and Duke
"I'm not crazy, I am just misunderstood!"
LORD OF THE FLIES!!! CONQUERER OF ALL WORLDS!!!

Offline Magesteff

  • Eater of books
  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 12008
  • I want to be a mysterious Woman...
  • Location: Palm Springs, FL, USA
  • Mood: Annoyed
  • SDC interest: waiting
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #21 on: April 07, 2013, 10:09:54 AM »
I don't see how he could be mis-informed if he was offered one by the people above him. And he is/was in BCT when it was offered.
Steffeny, with Hobbes. In memory of Spike (1989 ~ 12/14/2014) my little old gentleman, and Max (9/21/2006 ~ 6/2/2015).  Dog camp postponed until I am in a better situation.
FB:http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/Magesteff

Offline QueenSnappy

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 8235
  • The Queen of Snappy Comebacks
  • Location: Planet Earth
  • Mood: Exhausted
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #22 on: April 07, 2013, 03:46:35 PM »
The DS informed him of that during a discussion about whether he would continue, get con-leave (convalescent leave), be medically discharged, or recycle to the next set of soldiers. 

He was informed if he was given a medical discharge based on an injury technically while out on maneuvers, his medical discharge would state an injury - not illness such as asthma - and because he was injured because two other soldiers had been fighting, he, as an innocent by-stander, would have been eligible.  The DS even told him that it isn't that hard to "scam" them, and actually mentioned King Montolvan.  The DS knew I had a SD because he had seen a picture of me with my son & Grets in his locker. 

This from a guy who is walking around with huge chunks of shrapnel in his leg from an IED.  He did 6 tours over there.  The only reason he is stateside and a DS now is because of the shrapnel.  He wanted to go back but the Army wouldn't let him.   
Follow Diva on her Official Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Gretltheservicedog

Offline latopla

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 5700
  • Who Rescued Who?
  • Location: Missouri
  • Mood: Silly
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #23 on: April 07, 2013, 04:50:40 PM »
Yeah I have no respect for this guy for many reasons.  Mainly because of the outrageous ways he handles access disputes, and because he kicked me out of his group because I said something he didn't want to hear.

I have his book on my Kindle but I haven't read it yet.  I might one day if I'm in the mood for that kind of fiction.
Katherine and Sheriff     http://www.aschizophrenicandadog.com 
You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.
"You've only got one life to love what you do."  --The Script

Offline QueenSnappy

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 8235
  • The Queen of Snappy Comebacks
  • Location: Planet Earth
  • Mood: Exhausted
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #24 on: April 08, 2013, 08:27:05 AM »
Yeah I have no respect for this guy for many reasons.  Mainly because of the outrageous ways he handles access disputes, and because he kicked me out of his group because I said something he didn't want to hear.

I have his book on my Kindle but I haven't read it yet.  I might one day if I'm in the mood for that kind of fiction.

LOL Katherine...it is a work of fiction.  And if you think that he has a healthy dose of self-entitlement, you gotta read the book.  You will likely find yourself wanting to throw large, heavy objects at his head.  There is one part of it where he describes during "team training" (bolding added for emphasis) where he talks about him having left his meds behind during an outing with his "teammates" and going into some kind of an attack - pain and flashbacks and whatnot.  Some of the other teams were having trouble and the rule is that we all stay until everyone gets it right.  Well, that was taking too long for his royal highness and so he got on the train, during a flashback and pain episode, by himself, with a dog he had only had a week or so at that point, and got himself back to their facility where he happily got his medication and described in great detail how he and his dog were sitting happily in a chair for an hour or more (I want to say it was like another 2 hours) before the rest of his class got back. 

Part of the soldiers creed is "I will never leave a fallen comrade behind".  Yet, he left a whole bunch of them behind to go take care of his addiction.  And yes, I said addiction.  He goes into great detail about his alcohol consumption and his narcotic consumption prior and during team training.  Yet, he says now that the dog "cured" him of needing his medications.  I call  :tongue: on that.  That's the biggest load of  :poo: I have ever heard in my life. 

There is no measure of the loathing I feel towards this guy.  As an American, as the mother of a Soldier, and as a fellow service dog handler, I am ashamed of him. 
Follow Diva on her Official Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Gretltheservicedog

Offline Kirsten

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 39455
  • Have a flufftastic day!
  • Location: Missouri, USA
  • Mood: Okay
  • SDC interest: owner-trainer
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #25 on: April 08, 2013, 10:56:55 AM »
I never ever leave home without my emergency meds.  If they are that critical that I will cease to function safely without them, then they do not leave my pocket/purse.

I also have PTSD, though I do a fairly good job now of managing with CBT.  At one point, I needed narcotics to keep from screaming and ripping my own skin off when I got triggered.  Here's the thing about those drugs.  When you are in an episode, they can bring you down to normal-ish.  You don't feel drugged, you just feel like you can manage.  But if you take them when you are NOT in an episode, then they are recreational drugs and just make you happy as a lark.  In fact, the one most commonly prescribed, which I take PRN (as needed) is also a popular street drug called "Xanadu."  The pharmacy calls it alprazolam or Xanax.  It is addictive if taken recreationally and sometimes even when taken as directed by a physician.  It's not something to play around with. 
Kirsten and Tardis
In loving memory of Cole (1/11/99 - 6/26/12)  He gave me back my life.

"The one absolute, unselfish friend that man can have in this selfish world -- the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous -- is his dog." -George G. Vest

Offline QueenSnappy

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 8235
  • The Queen of Snappy Comebacks
  • Location: Planet Earth
  • Mood: Exhausted
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #26 on: April 08, 2013, 02:06:54 PM »
I think there is a distinction between being "dependent" upon a drug, which is needing that drug to control your disease and make you function.  I am dependent upon Exalgo (extended release hydromophone).  I am also dependent upon Ambien and Elavil, both for sleep.  Without the Exalgo, my legs feel like they are being crushed.  I will literally scream in pain.  My doctors tried no less than 12 different drugs with me to stop the pain.  And nothing else helped.

I am dependent on sleep aids.  I have a sleep disorder.  If I don't take my sleep medication, I will go days without sleeping more than an hour here or there.  I regularly take 12 mg of Ambien.  I also take - depending on my fatigue level - 50-150 mg of Elavil. 

There is a difference between dependence and addiction.  These are actual excerpts from his book: 

Chapter 10 - "Company"

"For New Years Eve 2007, the Wounded Warrior Project invited its members to a front-row seat (courtesy of the NYPD) to watch the apple drop in Times Square.  I had always wanted to do that, so I asked and was given a pass to attend.  As the date approached, though, the event starting eating away at my mind.  I was so worried about the crow, and the logistics, that I started drinking the day before to alleviate the stress.  Not December 31, but the morning of December 30.   I had been so hammered for so long by the time the police arrived to escort us to Times Square that the whole evening was like a city at sea, shimmering on a floating horizon you're never quite sure is real. 

I visited a veteran in the hospital with the Wounded Warrior Project.  I remember that for sure, but I can't remember how he was wounded.  I saw the first half of the Bruce Springsteen concert, with disastrous results.  I attended a Mets baseball game or possibly two, again with the Wounded Warrior Project, again plastered on booze so I could deal with the crowd.  Please forgive my imprecision.  I realize I should know how many Mets games I've been to, but there are large chunks of my life, especially in the year before meeting Tuesday, that I seem to have lost." 


As the wife of an alcoholic in recovery, I know full well what he is describing here.  He is describing alcoholic black outs.  I have witnessed enough of them to know them. 

I didn't realize how far we'd progressed until we took the train to a nearby town for our first long outing, a morning in the park.  It sounds easy, I know, but it's not.  Parks are crowded, distracting Tuesday and me for entirely different reasons.  I was hyper-vigilant and nervous; Tuesday was fascinated by the squirrels.  My failure to reach him, combined with the pressure of being in public for several hours, had a strong effect on  my mood.  I had left my medicine back at (program name), and as noon approached my back began to hurt and my head to swim.  I could feel the drugs leaving my bloodstream, and by the time we headed for the train station for our return to Dobbs Ferry, I was so anxious and unnerved I had almost forgotten Tuesday was at my side. 

By the time the train approached, I was on the edge.  I could feel the emptiness in my veins, and my brain was pounding against my skull.  I needed to get on that train so I could get to my medicine, but (name) was having trouble with (dog).  They weren't going to make it to the platform in time, and with the complexity of the mid-day schedules on the XXX Railroad nobody was even sure if this was the right train.  As the train slowed to a stop, the sound around me grew into a buzzing, then a throbbing, then a confused cacophony as everyone blathered about whether we should get on the train or wait for (name) or go and patrol that house or bomb that building or...or...or..

In the past, the situation would have overwhelmed me, leading to a migraine and more often than not, a round of violent vomiting.  But this time, instead of spiraling, I looked down at Tuesday.  He was standing calmly against my right leg, looking up at me.  He knew I was agitated, but he wasn't discouraged.  In fact, he was more focused than he'd been all day.  He wasn't encouraging me; the relationship doesn't work that way.  He was simply expecting me to make a decision that he could follow.  So I did.  I got on the train, leaving the rest of the group behind.  As I settled into my seat, Tuesday looked at me again.  There was no doubt about it, he was giving me an Atta-boy.  My dog was proud of me, and that made me proud of myself.  By the time the others arrived, I was lounging in the kitchen at (program name) with Tuesday at my side, the medicines racing through my system."


What he described here - coming off of a high and being unable to think about anything but getting his next fix.   I have spoken to a number of addicts over the years, and they talk about how they can feel themselves losing their high - they can feel every minute of it - and they only thing that they can think of is getting to their next one.  Every addict I have spoken to, both during counseling with family members of other alcoholics, and times listening to addicts testify about their motivation to commit a crime - usually in the context of an attempt to get into a treatment program.   

He describes "leaving the rest of the group behind" to get to his medication.  To me this is even more disturbing because this program caters primarily to veterans.  They do have some non-veteran clients, but when they do their team training for veterans, they do it separate from non-veteran clients.

He was with three others.  All soldiers.  All with far more physical challenges than him.  A woman whose arms were blown off by an IED.  Another soldier who was a double amputee, his legs.  And yet, he leaves them behind.  An Army soldier never leaves behind a fallen comrade.  That starts in Basic Training.  My son was talking about some of the members of his platoon during Basic and he said there were plenty of them that he couldn't stand personally, but that he'd take a bullet for them.  That's a soldier's mentality.  This guy talks about running away - thinking only of himself. 

There is so much more that I could say - but it makes me sick to my stomach - because this guy has people drinking his own brand of Kool Aid that is disturbing on many levels.   
Follow Diva on her Official Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Gretltheservicedog

Offline Kirsten

  • Administrator
  • *****
  • Posts: 39455
  • Have a flufftastic day!
  • Location: Missouri, USA
  • Mood: Okay
  • SDC interest: owner-trainer
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #27 on: April 08, 2013, 05:23:21 PM »
I don't think anyone mentioned dependence.  I said narcotics such as some tranquilizers commonly used to treat PTSD are addictive and sometimes used recreationally (which is illegal) rather than therapeutically.
Kirsten and Tardis
In loving memory of Cole (1/11/99 - 6/26/12)  He gave me back my life.

"The one absolute, unselfish friend that man can have in this selfish world -- the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous -- is his dog." -George G. Vest

Offline QueenSnappy

  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 8235
  • The Queen of Snappy Comebacks
  • Location: Planet Earth
  • Mood: Exhausted
  • SDC interest: SD partner
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #28 on: April 08, 2013, 06:20:32 PM »
I was pointing out the difference between using medications as needed - as you stated - you keep them in pocket or purse in case of emergency.  I keep my medications on me as well - for a number of reasons.  My muscle relaxer could be considered a recreational drug (baclofen) in some circles.  I have also been on Xanax, Valium and other drugs for my anxiety attacks.  They were PRN as well.   I was dependent on them to help manage my disorder.  With the assistance of a very good therapist, I have since learned coping mechanisms, including visualization therapy, deep breathing exercises and others to help me manage instead of taking the drugs.   I still have a prescription for Valium if I start spiraling. 

What I was talking about is his description of alcoholic blackouts.  One of the excerpts that I did not include was that in the weeks leading up to getting his dog, he "put that bottle down 100 times".  Only to pick it right back up again.  You have a guy who was on - by his own admission - over 20 different medications that he took every single day - several times a day  - heavy duty narcotic pain killers, muscle relaxers, anti-depressants and whatever else - and drinking bottles of alcohol.  That is an addict.  Yet lately he has said that he no longer needs a quarter of those medications because of his dog.   

How is it that a dog cures someone of being dependent on 15 medications or addicted to alcohol?  If that were truly the case, then everyone who is on medications need only get a dog.  Every addict just needs to get a dog.  He talks about how his "fear of crowds" was so overwhelming, he wouldn't leave his apartment unless he was drunk - and it was only to go get more alcohol.  But now, just because of his dog, he has been cured of his agoraphobia and can jet around the country and the world on speaking engagements and book signing events.  I had a fear of crowds after I got knocked down in the mall.  I am better now because I have Gretl, because I don't think anyone is going to kick her out from under me like they did my cane.  But I am not cured.  I still have panic now and then.  I don't claim to be cured. 

You don't leave home without your meds.  You have enough state of mind to know that you may need them.  I am going to assume that he was given a schedule before going on that outing during team training that day.  Wouldn't common sense dictate that hey - I am going to be out and about in a park - which I know can have triggers for me - I should take meds along with me.  Why would he leave them behind?  Going on my own team training experience, when we had a field trip that we were going on, the trainers would remind us the day before to bring along any medications we might need along the way.  Because I requested it, my dog's trainer texted me every morning to remind me to pack my meds.  I just got into the habit of packing 2 days worth of medications (in approved labeled bottles) in Gretl's harness.  Now I always have two days worth in there, all the time.  That's being proactive in my self-preservation. 

That brings me back to the question of why would he not take his medications with him?  He didn't feel they were necessary?  How does one go from taking 20 medications to forgetting them?  I understand he has a TBI (by his claim), but I would imagine that he has learned some coping skills along the way, including reminders and back up plans.  So that leads me to ask again, why and/or how.  I wonder if that, like the rest of his story, was "embellished" to make the book a little more exciting.  What's a more heartwarming story than his dog leading him through a crisis like that when they hadn't even finished team training or he needed to get back to the program facility because he was jonesing for a fix? 

I guess I take a lot of issue with what he portrays and what he is. 
Follow Diva on her Official Facebook Page:

https://www.facebook.com/Gretltheservicedog

Offline Magesteff

  • Eater of books
  • Old Timer
  • *****
  • Posts: 12008
  • I want to be a mysterious Woman...
  • Location: Palm Springs, FL, USA
  • Mood: Annoyed
  • SDC interest: waiting
Re: Until Tuesday
« Reply #29 on: April 08, 2013, 07:17:49 PM »
If curing an addiction were as easy as getting a dog, there would be no one who smokes cigarettes (i.e. nicotine addiction). My dad had dogs on and off throughout his life. It did not stop him from becoming addicted, nor did it stop him being addicted to them while he owned the dogs. It wasn't until he was over 50 and developed Diabetes that he started using one of the  nicotine patch system and was able to stop smoking. A dog didn't do that, he didn't even stop smoking when as a pre-teen I begged him to stop. He did that because he felt it was time to get off the nicotine and get it out of his body for good.

And I am afraid, that if those situations are a large part of his book, I have no desire to read about a man who was addicted to substances and refused to get help for it. A dog does not count as "help" in getting over a narcotic or an alcohol addiction.
Steffeny, with Hobbes. In memory of Spike (1989 ~ 12/14/2014) my little old gentleman, and Max (9/21/2006 ~ 6/2/2015).  Dog camp postponed until I am in a better situation.
FB:http://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/Magesteff