At 19 years old, Justin left the beautiful town of Henderson, KY, and enlisted in the United States Air Force.
During his 20 years of service, he held a variety of different jobs – everything from Cook to Combat Readiness Instructor. His most taxing job, however, would be when he was assigned as the Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge, Mortuary Affairs.
For nearly six years he spent his time performing human remains inspections, uniforming the deceased, organizing military escorts, arranging for burial with honors, and consoling grieving families. Justin also managed Combat Mortuary Operations at two separate deployed locations.
In late 2012, Justin decided to share his story in the book, “And Then I Cried, Stories of a Mortuary NCO.” His hope was the story could help others struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
He is also an accomplished artist and his works can be seen hanging on the walls of the Pentagon in the Healing Arts Display.
In 2013 Justin was Medically Retired from the Air Force with 20 years of service. After retirement Justin continued his advocacy and worked with The Air Force Wounded Warrior Program where he managed the Ambassador Program. He was responsible for teaching seriously injured or ill Airmen how to tell and share their stories of recovery with audiences worldwide. During his tenure there, he trained over 55 Warriors and briefed over 30,000 Airmen ranging from Airman to Four Star General.
Justin now works at Warriors Heart, the country’s only dual diagnosis drug and alcohol treatment center that works exclusively with Military, Veterans and First Responders suffering from chemical dependency and psychological injuries such as PTSD and Traumatic Brain Injury.
Justin has been featured on CMTs “I Love Kellie Pickler” and has been a guest on over 200 radio shows nationwide. In 2015, he was awarded the American Solider Networks Hero Service Award for his work helping veterans in need.
Justin has only one wish – if his work inspires you, do something about it, live beyond PTSD, live with purpose, and find your voice.
To see Justin’s previous speaking events, click here.