Shortly after Lt. Colonel David Berube of Oak Bluffs, said farewell to a 21-year career as a chaplain in the Massachusetts Air National Guard in September 2019, he and his wife Ellen attended a Fall Couples Retreat in Yarmouth, organized by Heroes In Transition (HIT).
By that point, David had been struggling with PTSD for a little less than a year. He had been seeking ways for him and Ellen to live with “this new reality,” he said. “With post-traumatic stress disorder, things can get better, but they don’t go back to what they were before completely. You regain function. You regain your life, but it’s just different.”
Next month at HIT’s 13th Annual Fall Gala at The Coonamessett on Gifford Street in Falmouth, the couple will share their story and how the Mashpee-based nonprofit has played a critical role in helping them begin to heal from PTSD. The pair will serve as the keynote speakers for the event which serves as a major fundraiser for HIT, providing the organization with the resources to carry out programs which provide assistance to service members, veterans, and military families in the region.
Individuals or groups interested in attending the Fall Gala, which is being held on Saturday, Nov.12, from 6 to 10 p.m., can purchase tickets at www.HITFallGala.org. People can also make a donation to the event using the same link.
David, who also served as a police officer with the Oak Bluffs Police Department and a pastor at the Federated Church of Martha’s Vineyard in Edgartown, currently assists HIT by helping to manage its Veterans Equine Warrior Program.
“Heroes has provided me opportunities to lead again, but at a less stressful level,” David said. “It has really been a part of my healing journey.”
HIT Executive Director Nicole Spencer said the Berubes serve as a reminder of why the organization’s work is so important.
“Often, the impact of military service extends to the spouses and to the family. David’s struggles with PTSD have not only affected his life, but Ellen’s as well,” she said. “This is why we are committed to supporting the entire family unit through our programs. With David and Ellen, it’s allowed them to connect with other military couples who are facing similar challenges. It lets them know they are not alone.”
Current sponsors for the Fall Gala are Asset Management Resources LLC, the Barnstable County Sheriff’s Office, Cape Cod Five, Cape Cod Retractable, Inc., Devadigm, The Goosey Fund, the Law Offices of Boyd & Boyd P.C., Dellbrook|JKS, Eastern Bank, Rockland Trust, Cape Associates, the Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod, the Law Office of Jane E. Sullivan P.C., Cape Associates, Cooperative Bank of Cape Cod, Chapman Funerals & Cremations, The Valle Group, and Roche Bros.
Businesses interested in sponsoring this year’s Fall Gala can email firstname.lastname@example.org.