Bridging the Gap

November 7, 2019
By uclahealth
1 min read

“After 22 years of being around numerous explosions and jumping out of airplanes, it finally caught up to me,” reflects 51-year-old Tad Steckler, who was an Army engineer dealing with explosives and demolition. “Before Operation Mend, I was easily irritated, lacked an ability to focus, and couldn’t remember things. I knew what was happening to me, but I didn’t know how to stop it. I had gotten yoga certified, and while we thought we had a decent grip on my PTSD, I still had headaches and was irritable. Things were rough with my wife and girls. So we started looking at traumatic brain injuries. Operation Mend was the first place that recognized this and helped walk me through the treatment program and how to communicate with my family.” Nodding, Tad’s wife, Robyn Loveland explains, “He’s a tough guy, and we were all used to doing our own things. It took professionals like UCLA Health and Operation Mend to know how to handle these discussions and help us find a way to communicate. It seems simple to understand each other, but it’s not. They helped us bridge the gap between the army and the civilian world.”