MISSION, Kan. -- The horror and pain of war persists for many veterans decades later. That's even though they receive talk therapy and medication. Now in the metro, some are also getting a "touch" of healing.
From his toes to his head, Ted John has held war inside him for 25 years. A Marine helicopter electrician in the first Gulf War, John says he's struggled ever since he spent a day on morgue duty and watched aircraft in the days after.
"Fully loaded with ordnance and coming back empty and realizing we're making a lot more people look like these guys in the morgue," said John.
Now he is getting help for his post-traumatic stress disorder and depression in a way few veterans have. It's called energy healing, and it's based on the principle that each person has a subtle energy field in and around him.
"When you have a trauma or an injury, the field will get stuck at that point in time," said John Hoefer, executive director of the Kansas City Healing Project.
As an energy healer, Hoefer's goal is to "unstick" the energy field by touching various places on the body. Hoefer points to one study of active duty Marines that was published in the journal Military Medicine. It found a 25 percent reduction in PTSD symptoms and a 35 percent reduction in depression symptoms in those who had healing touch and guided imagery. It's one reason why the Kansas City Healing Project is offering the sessions free to veterans and their family members.
"They can begin to re-experience who they were before," said Hoefer.
John added, "It allows the pain to dissipate. The stranglehold isn't quite as tight anymore."
John says energy healing isn't a cure, but it is helping him feel better.
Hoefer says the free sessions are funded through donations from the Deramus Family Foundation and Don and Jean Wagner. To schedule a session, call 816-718-6358. The sessions are held at 6045 Martway, Suite 104, Mission, Kansas.