Sheridan, Wyoming architect Timothy Belton has designed a deceptively simple tool he hopes will help veterans take initial steps toward breaking through that wall: a Frisbee-sized cardboard wheel called the AnswerRing.
When 11 Sheridan area World War II veterans board the Wyoming Honor Flight to Washington, D.C., on May 17, their journey will be quite different from the one they made more than six decades ago. The same men took flights, ships and truck transports as far from Wyoming as
Saipan, India, Japan, Hawaii and Europe. It isn’t much comparatively, but the men will be honored and, in the most minuscule way, thanked for their bravery with a flight and visit to the World War II monument in Washington. Sheridan resident Hal Quist, 90, served as a waist gunner in the Army Air Force stationed in Deenethorpe, England, on 27 highaltitude
bombing missions over Nazi Germany from Aug. 3, 1944-Aug. 20, 1945. He will take the Honor Flight. “I want to see how Washington has changed since I was there the last time, oh, 20 years ago — primarily, I want to see the war memorials,” Quist said, holding a worn journal with a green fabric cover and yellowed pages of neat handwriting.
For longtime guide and fly-tier Gordon Rose, the sport of fly-fishing has been a both a career and a lifelong passion. For military veterans like Nathan Hansen, the opportunity to tie flies and catch fish in the Bighorn Mountains is a form of therapy that helps take their minds off their wartime experiences. In a conference room at Sheridan VA Medical Center on Monday night, nine veterans quietly listened as Rose patiently explained the steps involved in tying an elk hair caddis fly. Using an overhead screen, Rose described how to create simulated wings from elk hair and to use fluffs of cotton to build the body of the insect, which is a popular meal for trout living in Wyoming waters. Many in the room had served in Operation Iraqi Freedom or Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, and none had any flyfishing experience.
The VA, Casper Housing Authority, Self Help Center and other groups -- take time one day in late January to tally all the emergency shelter beds in the region and whether they are occupied. Then, they "scrape the yard" by walking the streets and seeking out any homeless who may be roughing it on their own.