Preface: Reading this article will teach you how to Cope with the tragedies of life and change the pain, suffering, isolation and tragedy of PTSD into a positive opportunity.
Countless times during and after Major Disasters Mental Health Care Professionals have asked me to speak with first responders and others who were considered to be in threat of committing suicide. So far I have had a 100% success rate. The solution/method I used is written below. It is all the same except that I would tell these lonely, isolated, distant people; exactly, what they were thinking. They were shocked that somebody could read their mind. They felt alone; even their wives didn’t understand them. I made them realize that they were not alone; that they were in a ‘normal’ process. I made them realize that they had choices; that all was not lost.
There are some Universal Truths that apply to you and everyone else. Every tragedy of life can be an opportunity to grow and improve as a human being. It can ‘break you’ or ‘make you better’. It is your choice.
Here are some of the ‘truths’ that I have learned, in my life; from my childhood as an unwanted orphan; my experiences at more than 100 major disasters and 14 years of severe, serious and life-threatening illness ( Since September of 2001, 911):
- You are not alone. Tragedy and suffering ‘of every kind’ have always been a part of life.
- You are responsible for what you do. You are not responsible for what other people do.
- No matter how bad things are; you should understand that the world is full of people who suffer more than you. You should be grateful; that it is not worse.
- Every bad thing that happens to you presents you with an opportunity to choose; your path.You can be ‘overwhelmed’, ‘crushed’, ‘destroyed’, ‘victimized’. This choice can turn you into a ‘drug addict’, ‘alcoholic’ or ‘suicide’.You can react with ‘hatred’, ‘violence’, ‘spite’ and/or ‘revenge’. This choice can make you a ‘psychopath’, ‘murderer’, ‘criminal’ or ‘hate monger’.
The other choice you have is to take the tragedy and personal suffering ‘turn it around’ and use it to become a more understanding, compassionate, loving, kind, decent and generous person. The choice is yours which path you take. You have the choice. It is entirely your decision.
- Everybody and everything dies. Death and dieing are part of life. It is how you live your life that matters the most. Life is for ‘living’. Do your ‘living’ while you can.
- The more good you do; the more evil and evil people will try to destroy you. It takes great effort to be a ‘good man’ in a world full of evil. The most important choice of all and the greatest opportunity that life presents is to be true to your spirit, soul and character when you are surrounded by ‘greed’, ‘selfishness’, ‘ignorance’, ‘inhumanity’ and ‘evil’. This is the greatest reward that life can give.
- Maximize the good and minimize the bad. My method of managing major disasters and life.
What You Call a Nightmare I call Remembering and/or A Nightmare Night With The World’s Most Experienced Rescuer. Feb 10, 2015. 4:30 am.
I got up, to write this down. I usually don’t have nightmares. I dream peacefully. When I do have nightmares they are worse than anything; few people, in the world, can imagine and yet they are more like relatively peaceful memories; rather than, screaming nightmares. They are not nearly as bad as what actually happened; what I actually experienced, with all it’s intensity. You have heard of the nightmare that is supposed to cause you to die from a heart attack? The nightmare where you are falling towards the ground; like jumping off a building. Supposedly, you will die from a heart attack if you hit the bottom. Well, it is not true, with me. Many times I have fallen and even smashed on the sidewalk. Sometimes, I wake up after hitting the sidewalk and sometimes I stay asleep. I have been in 3,000 serious life threatening circumstances and seen much horror. I am a pretty tough guy. Read my challenge blog to ISIS at https://dougcopp.me/2015/02/01/isis-is-not-a-serious-threat-isis-is-a-weak-and-cowardly-organization-that-is-phony-and-a-fraud-somebody-needs-to-stand-up-to-evil-and-spit-in-their-face-i-have-done-this-all-of-my-adult-life-isis/. I spit in the face of these satanic, psychopathic murders. I am a formidable adversary to death and to evil.
Tonight’s nightmares have a ‘twist’; because, I imagined Dave Nunn to be in them. Dave Nunn is a retired real-estate-related worker, living in Desert Hot Springs California. He is a bully and a ‘know it all’. Lately, he has increased his continuous bullying of Carol Camelot, a very feminine volunteer team member. Carol is always wearing dresses, make-up and pretty hats. Dave Nunn is like a predator, to Carol. Nunn is the type of guy who turns ‘beet red’ with anger, almost ‘foaming at the mouth’ screaming out lies and insults. He has been in my thoughts; because, he has harassed Carol and she is upset with him. I need to do something to stop this creep. His lies and inappropriate behavior are, also, directed towards destroying our life-saving work and having the effect of endangering the lives of children.
I had three ‘bad ones’ tonight. The first was in El Salvador during the earthquake of 1986. It was Hell on Earth. Everyone was terrified because of the civil war and the thousands of dead corpses, with no food, shelter or clean water. President Duarte had given me an award for bravery and he had contacted the president of TACA Airlines; asking him to refund, the cost of our airline tickets. He did. President Duarte was good to me. In El Salvador, I saved a lot of lives; but it was very bad. We didn’t know about post traumatic stress then; but, one victim actually stood; like a statue, in front of a collapsed building, for 7 days; until he fell over. He had literally dropped dead.
The children suffered. I have bad memories of things that happened to children, there. I won’t repeat them. It would make you sick. That bothered me the most.
After the rescue had finished, a team member and I went to the beach. No American had been to that area for 3 years; who wasn’t trying to kill them. The country was in the middle of a terrible civil war. This time, at the beach, was really intense. It was like standing next to a stick of dynamite with the fuse running out.
My friend and I, stood in the blood, of 30 soldiers; who has been ambushed, a few minutes; before. The air was extremely tense. Soldiers were frightened. We were captured by guerrillas and were being interrogated. It was bizarre. In the background, the guerrillas were shouting through mega phones, to the people; that they had the soldiers, on the run and that they were taking over. There was chaos all around us. I was in the town square, with my back against a steel pipe fence. The interrogator was sitting a foot above me. He wanted me to tell him the ‘layout’ of the American Embassy Compound; so that they could attack it. They had a gun to my head and were going to kill me.
I looked my interrogator calmly, in the eyes and told him : “ I spent my own money to come to your country, as an unpaid volunteer. I risked my life crawling inside of collapsed buildings to save the lives of your people. Now, you want me to tell you how you can kill more people. I refuse. If I am the kind of guy you want to kill …then kill me…I am not going to help you kill anybody. (ABC filmed an aftershock occurring while I was inside of a collapsed building. ABC filmed me emerging from the cloud of dust. ABC stayed with me, for days, filming me do very dangerous things, for the nightly news. The TV Producer had shaken my hand, after telling me that he had covered war and disasters, for 13 years and I was the bravest man he had ever seen.)
So, during my nightmare I am with the guerrillas who had huddled together and decided to protect me; rather than, kill me. (All real.) They had taken me to an old worn down building with a huge gated front doorway and a center court-yard. I was given a room; with my friend, Jose Ortega. We were to stay there; until, 6 am; but must be out of the area by 7 am or we could be killed in the crossfire of another battle.
We slept in 2 hammocks suspended, thank God, above the floor. I got up to have a leak, in the hole in the floor. There were 2 X 45 gallon drums holding water, I stumbled into one and THOUSANDS of Cockroaches came running out. It looked like the scene from ‘The Mummy’..only it was real. Everything so far, in my nightmare, was remembering what had actually happened.
In my nightmare one of the cockroaches had the face of Dave Nunn. That was only in my nightmare.
The 2 nd Nightmare took place in Gugarat, India. This was the most successful disaster, that I had ever worked. I was responsible for saving 250,000 lives here: according to the Ministry of Health of the Government of India.
The plague had killed 40,000 people, in this region, 4 years before. Now, we had 100,000 corpses with rats feasting on them. The rats would spread the plague. The Ministry of Health, at a closed door session, in my presence, had unequivocally affirmed that nothing could be done…at least 250,00 would die. I told them that I had a plan. I gave them the details. They implemented it and the plague was prevented.
Part of my plan, to prevent an outbreak of the plague was to burn all the copses; before, the rats could eat them, proliferate and spread the disease. It was a scene out of Hell. The night was dark (no electricity) except for thousands of fires. Every tree ( Later, I was very upset to hear that so many trees were cut down.) had been cut down, for firewood, for a radius of 30 miles. It seemed like every city block had a bonfire of human corpses on each end and in the middle. The air was intense with the smell and smoke of so many thousands of corpses being burned. The area was hilly and you could see dozens of fires of corpses….as far as the eyes could see.
After a few days, I was exhausted and had to sleep. There was a clearing next to a collapsed movie theater. I don’t know if there was 1,000 bodies piled up or 3,000 corpses piled up; but it was too many to burn, at once. There was a log jam of dead decomposing corpses. I slept next to the pile of bodies.
Rats were crawling in and out of the pile of corpses. It was a testament to my exhaustion…. the fact that I could sleep there; but, I did.
In my nightmare..all of this real stuff was in it; but, it wasn’t as intense as the ‘reality’ when it actually happened to me.
In the nightmare one of the rats feeding on the corpses had the face of Dave Nunn. That was only in my nightmare.
(I was on the front page of the Times of India, The front page of the Mumbai main Newspaper, TV, Government Films. I was very successful there. You can watch a video of His Highness, The Maharajah, thanking me, here: You can read about it here: https://dougcopp.me/2013/04/07/duck-and-cover-kills-more-people-in-india/
My third nightmare was the worst disaster. It was my experiences in Haiti. I was very sick, from my 911 injuries; when this disaster happened. I shouldn’t have gone; but, I did. I got sick, in Haiti and the Doctors, from a South American MASH unit had wanted to keep me in the MASH Hospital. They treated me well; because, they had all seen me on TV, a few months; before, helping to recover a missing Argentinian Student, on a mountain top, in Mali, Africa. Gabriel Buchmann, a phd graduate, was a young man destined to make a huge positive impact, on our world. It was with great sadness that he had ‘passed away’; before, we were able to rescue him. Nevertheless, It made quite a good impression that an American cared so much about an Argentinian life. I refused to stay, in bed. I needed to go back to work. I took medicine, with me; and left the Hospital; against, their collective, continuous insistence; that I stay, in bed.
In Haiti, I calculate only 20,000 died from the earthquake; itself. By that I mean that they were crushed to death doing ‘duck and cover’; instead of surviving doing the ‘triangle of life’. Dave Nunn is a ‘know nothing’ blowhard; who teaches people to ‘duck and cover’. People like him hate rescuers with experience or real knowledge. It boosts his lack of self-esteem to abuse people like Carol Camelot.
Anyway; as much as, 220,000 died from being murdered; minor untreated injuries turning fatal, due to lack of medical treatment and lack of food and water (starving to death, dieing from thirst). This was a deliberate and preventable ‘crime against humanity’ of the highest magnitude. The Commander of the Air Port should have been ‘court martialed’ and hung. You can read all the details, see the pictures and evidence, at https://dougcopp.me/2011/01/10/us-military-lied-about-haiti-resulting-in-death-and-suffering/
In Haiti, NOBODY went out at night. No military, no police and no rescuer. It would be certain death. During the day, the soldiers ‘rightly and necessarily’ aimed their guns at the starving masses with their fingers on the triggers and their eyes squinting. They were ready to pull the trigger. The masses of swarming people would murder for a drink of water or a piece of bread. It was very bad during the day and from Absolute Hell, at night.
At night, I was staying behind the wall of a collapsed Hotel. Rescuers and soldiers had swarmed there to survive the night. The murderers wouldn’t attack there. I hadn’t slept, in days. I was very sick and exhausted. I was sleeping on the bare sidewalk without a blanket. As I laid there it seemed like a metronome timer on top of a piano…swinging back and forth for timing…only the sounds weren’t the clicks of a swinging pendulum..they were death/rape/murder screams. It seemed to go on forever…it was horrible..I had never felt so helpless, to help people.
This was all real. This is what I had actually experienced. There would be the shrill of a rape scream from a woman, followed by a gun shot and the death scream of another victim…it went on and on and on. Shrill rape scream, followed by gunshot, followed by murder scream…… There was no law and at night people were murdered for any reason…for food, water, revenge, robbery, rape, insanity or just fun. Satan came up out of Hell, to rule the night.
Finally, after a few minutes, I stood up. I couldn’t take it any more. I got back up and went back to work, doing some preparation, for daylight’s next rescue.
During the nightmare, Dave Nunn had the face of one of the murderers.
Dave Nunn tells viscous lies about our team and; especially, Carol Camelot; who lives in his ‘turf’. He has never been to a disaster; but, he pretends that he ‘knows everything’. He tries to discredit Carol with his lies and scare tactics. He is an asshole and now, he was in my dreams. Maybe, he showed his real face, in my nightmares.
The Good People of Desert Hot Springs should know Dave Nunn. He is not a good guy.
end of Part A
Part B :
The bully of DHS. Most men remember, in junior high school, having a school bully. The bully who happened to grow faster than other kids; usually not so bright. He, always seemed to pick on small guys; especially, if they were smarter than him. Most of these bullies; didn’t do so well in High School. They usually ‘flunked out’ of high school or just seemed to disappear after somebody, their own size, ‘beat the hell out of him’.
As a former police officer, I met lots of these types. They delight in tormenting helpless people, to compensate for their inferiority complexes. This behavior usually got them in jail. I remember one viscous individual who robbed an elderly disabled man. The old guy had just cashed his pension check and this ‘bully’, 22 years old and very muscular, robbed him The shocking part wasn’t the robbery. The shocking part was the absolute brutality. Long after the old guy turned over his check, this viscous and despicable criminal kept punching and kicking the old man; till he was ‘almost beaten to death’ . The old guy had his teeth knocked out, jaw broken, ribs broken and was left unconscious, on the sidewalk. With great pleasure, I pursued this individual till I cornered him. This cowardly creature didn’t resist arrest or ‘fight with someone who wasn’t helpless’. In fact, I regret that he didn’t. He was rightly, afraid of me. I would have enjoyed his ‘attacking’ me.
Another memorable individual had a criminal record, several pages long of violent serious felonies. My experience with him was after he shot his illegitimate, 6 month old baby, through the head. A police officer often deals with ‘bullies’: people without a sense of morality; combined with, inferiority complexes compensated by a viscous, hate-filled nature.
Many people in DHS know Carol Camelot. She has been a volunteer, for worthwhile causes and has lived in DHS, for many years. Carol is harmless 110 lb and very feminine woman who tries to be a good citizen.
Dave Nunn, a retired ‘real estate person’, is a ‘know it all’, bully without the normal limits of truthfulness or decency. He reminds me of the people that I mentioned above. I am surprised that he has gone to retirement age; without an ‘adjustment’. This bully viciously attacked her, on many occasions with vitriolic over the top lies, slurs and hatred; almost ‘foaming at the mouth’.
Cowardly, he told amazing lies about me too; but, not in my face. He waited until I had left the area; before, he launched into a viscous tirade. Isn’t it typical of cowardly, bullies to keep their mouth shut when a man is around; but go behind their back and attack a helpless woman.
When I was informed of Dave Nunn’s despicable behavior, Much to my chagrin, I was ‘talked out of’ suing Dave Nunn, for his cowardly lies. I was ‘calmed down’ with the premise that Dave Nunn was ‘hiding behind the skirt’ of DHS city legal liability. I have many friends in DHS. I love the place and the people. I didn’t sue. Now, I have been informed that; he is with the Chamber of Commerce finding a new form to attack Carol Camelot.
Maybe, Dave Nunn should have had a lesson in civility when he was in High School. Maybe, he belonged to a BDSM Club that found him too offensive and kicked him out. Maybe, his dog died from being beaten and he doesn’t have a new one yet. I do not know this man. I never met him. I have only heard evidence of his despicable nature and Carol telling me how much he has upset and harassed her.
One thing is for sure: ‘birds of a feather fly together’. As a police officer I found that most criminals travel in ‘packs’ or ‘gangs’ of like minded people. Maybe, people who don’t want to be associated with this kind of behavior should shun Dave Nunn.
I wrote a blog at https://dougcopp.me/2015/02/01/isis-is-not-a-serious-threat-isis-is-a-weak-and-cowardly-organization-that-is-phony-and-a-fraud-somebody-needs-to-stand-up-to-evil-and-spit-in-their-face-i-have-done-this-all-of-my-adult-life-isis/ .
I published the Blog Article; before, the beheading of the Kenji Goto and before, the Jordanian Pilot was burned. I wrote when nobody dared to confront ISIS, for the loathsome creatures they are. In fact, in the blog article, I wrote a long list of reasons why I wasn’t afraid of ISIS. I spoke my mind about the cowardice and ‘satanic’ behavior of ISIS. I dared them to come to my home and try to kill me; before, I go to the Middle East and help their enemies survive ‘being blown up’. I gave my address, phone numbers and all details. I ended by telling ISIS to go ‘FUCK THEMSELVES’. Dave Nunn,should read it. I wait for him too.