Combat wounded veterans frequently spend many months in rehabilitation while they recover from their injuries. In many cases their rehab facilities are far from home, and this can create incredible financial and psychological stresses on the veteran and his or her family.
Family members often put work and life on hold to be with their loved ones in the hospital while they recover. One man and wife team in Virginia have created a place where combat veterans and their families can get away from the stress and find peace and recovery in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains.
Boulder Crest Retreat was founded by Ken Falke and his wife Julia in the scenic town of Bluemont, about an hour west of Washington D.C. Ken was injured while serving as a Navy Explosives Ordinance Disposal (EOD) Technician, and created the EOD Warrior Foundation to support fellow injured EOD members and their families through their recovery. Ken and his wife saw the difficulties that wounded service members and their families go through during their recovery and looked for a way they could help.
In 2010, they established the Boulder Crest Retreat Foundation, and since then it has grown into a beautiful facility that is open to all combat veterans and their families.
Set on 37 acres donated by Ken and Julia, the retreat features beautiful log cabins, gardens, a lodge, outdoor activities, and an equine therapy center. Most importantly, Boulder Crest also provides a combat stress recovery program called Warrior PATHH (Progressive and Alternative Therapies for Healing Heroes). The 7-day program, focusing on education and a range of group therapy and recreation activities, is free for combat veterans, and shorter sessions are also available for couples, families, and caregivers. The retreat also hosts Family Rest and Reconnection Retreats that range from 2-7 days in length.
For more information on Ken, Boulder Crest, and the PATHH program, visit their website.