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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
July 28, 2016
Canadian Excellence

Combat Trauma and Veteran PTSD: A Marine's personal story

Jacob Davis-Mendelow, U.S. Marine Corps (Ret.), was born in Toronto to a middle class family. His mother is a social worker and his father has a PhD in social policy. So, it came as a shock that upon graduating from high school in 2005 at 17, Jake, looking for adventure and with a desire to help people, joined the United States Marine Corps.

During an enlistment of almost five years, Jake served two combat tours in Iraq. He returned from duty physically injured, emotionally traumatized and spiritually broken. He struggled to re-enter the civilian world and come to terms with the experiences and images that had confronted him in Iraq. Therapy only seemed to make things worse.

Then Jake's mom asked him to speak to her Social Service Worker students at Humber College about his frontline experiences and the unique needs of veterans returning from war. The talk was eye-opening for the students and therapeutic for Jake. He has since given over 40 presentations and continues to educate students, police, therapists and social workers about post traumatic stress disorder and mental health in returning veterans and what can be done to help them.

Today, Jake is an Associate Professor for Humber's Police Foundations Program and a full-time political science student at York University. He hopes to return to Iraq as a civilian to continue to help a country that has been so devastated.

On February 29, Jake will be sharing his story at the Faculty of Social Work. An informal presentation will be followed by an open Q&A period, in which Jake encourages the audience to ask difficult, personal questions to help them understand the effects of combat trauma and how to approach these issues as a practitioner or social worker.


Wednesday, February 29 | 4:30 to 7:30 PM

Faculty of Social Work, Room 101


Tickets are $15.

To register, email or call Lynne Jordan at 519-884-0710 ext. 5265. Space is limited. Tickets will not be available at the door.