Video raffle program continues to fund oxygen therapy for injured veterans

Veterans receiving innovative oxygen therapy thanks to charitable video raffle program


Columbus, Ohio (January 13, 2016) –  Veterans who have received difficult to heal acute wounds or traumatic brain injuries while serving in the military are receiving help through funding provided by a veterans and fraternal video raffle program.


In April of 2015, VFW of Ohio Charities (VFWOC) began funding experimental Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) treatments for veterans suffering from war-related injuries in partnership with Sara’s Garden, a treatment center in Wauseon, Ohio.


The treatments have been funded with revenue generated by the Ohio Veterans and Fraternal Charitable Coalition (OVFCC) charitable video raffle program.  Since its inception in 2011, the program has raised over $18 million to support posts, lodges and charitable causes like HBOT treatments.


Attorney General Mike DeWine has said the program is illegal and ordered it shut down in 2013.  Veterans and fraternal organizations disagreed and quickly obtained a temporary restraining order allowing the program to proceed, pending a court trial, which is set for this June.  The groups are hopeful they will win their court case and continue to be able to raise vital funds to support their posts and charities at no cost to taxpayers.


HBOT is the administration of 100% oxygen in the presence of pressure, which can help the body heal from conditions in which low oxygen in the tissues inhibits or complicates the healing process.  Since HBOT is still considered experimental, traditional health care usually does not cover treatments.


The VFWOC became aware of the potential of HBOT to change injured veterans’ lives and decided to fund treatments for a few military patients in order to evaluate its effectiveness.  Several veterans and active duty personnel have now been treated with great success.


The first veteran to receive treatments through VFWOC funding was Jeremy Lanham, who served two tours in Iraq with the Army where he was exposed to several large explosions, receiving multiple concussions and suffering injuries to his brain.  The injuries went untreated for some time, and as a result, Jeremy suffered extreme migraine headaches and was unable to sleep for years.  Jeremy received an intensive regimen of two one-hour treatments per day for eight weeks.  Since completing his treatments, Jeremy has experienced no severe headaches and has regained the ability to sleep soundly for extended periods of time.


“I haven’t had that in years and years, and it’s had a massive impact on my ability to function every day,” says Jeremy.


Click HERE to see a video interview with Jeremy about his progress.


Andrew Rupp is still actively serving in the Army and is currently in the process of recovering from surgery and an infection at a hospital at Fort Bragg.  The VFWOC funded HBOT treatments for Andrew to help his body heal.


“You and this organization have given me more than I am able to repay,” said Andrew.  “I want to thank you for providing me with the opportunity to heal. I am slotted to attend Ranger Assessment in April, and with out these treatments I would not have been ready to be successful and continue my Army career.”


Brock Dodrill is a Toledo-area Army veteran who suffers from PTSD.  He received 40 treatments and has shown tremendous improvement.  His father Brad says that while he is not willing to claim Brock’s symptoms have completely subsided, he and his wife Sherry “better recognize Brock as the son we knew prior to Iraq.”


“We are excited about the impact this program is having on the quality of life of our veterans,” said Bill Seagraves, Director of VFW of Ohio Charities.  “As we become aware of veterans who might benefit from HBOT treatments, we will continue to fund the treatments as much as we are able. And we will push forward with our lawsuit in order to maintain our ability to provide funding for vital programs.”