Robert Clark’s Biography

Hello, my name is Robert (Robbie) Clarke.

My whole childhood revolved around becoming a United States Marine. I didn’t know any Marines at the time but I felt I was destined to become one. I even went through the Devil Pups program as a kid. I finally stepped on the yellow footprints at Marine Corps Recruit Depot on September 9th 1997. I graduated and was officially a proud United States Marine on December 12th 1997. I served my active duty time and got out on sept 8, 2001. 3 days later Sept 11th happened and again I felt the duty to serve, so I joined a reserve unit in anticipation of joining the fight in Iraq or Afghanistan.

During my wait of deploying, I became a Deputy Sheriff with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department in May of 2002. My Son was also born on February 2nd 2002, which was and still is one of my proudest and greatest moments of my life. Seeing that my unit wasn’t deploying anytime soon, I volunteered to deploy with a Detachment in January 2005, augmenting 2ND ANG LICO (Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company) as a forward observer. My job was to go out with infantry units and specialized units to coordinate air strikes and call for fire for Artillery and Mortars against the enemy.

During my deployment I saw Combat and was exposed to things that absolutely change a person forever. From Improvised Explosive Devises {IED’s), Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Devises (VBIED’s aka car bombs), chemical weapons, firefights and ambushes. I saw the worst of mankind and the best of mankind. The bad is self-explanatory but the brotherhood and camaraderie, the man next to you willing to give his life so you may live was a reflex not a random occurrence. It’s a brotherhood that last forever.

When I came home my world turned upside down. My first night home I spent all alone, my then wife and son went to bed early and not a single friend even called. The following week I saw my lifelong childhood friends at a bbq and that was the last time I spoke with them. After seeing me and   how I changed they no longer talked to me. Several months later my then wife left me and walked out on my son and I. I was now a single father raising my son on my own and never had a chance to decompress after the war. I had Post Traumatic Stress, yet I did not know it at the time. Quite honestly, I was a disaster. I no longer enjoyed the things I used to, I never found any happiness in anything, I had severe trouble sleeping, and frequently made very poor choices.

After a couple years of suicidal ideations and a couple suicide attempts, I finally started seeing a therapist who diagnosed me with PTSD. I went through several years of therapy and finally got control of my PTSD but I was also having severe health issues that still to this day doctors cannot figure out. I have had my legs collapse and not be able to move them for several days, they treated me for Guillen Barre syndrome, I was also hospitalized with Ulcerative Colitis, I have Fibromyalgia, my legs and arms randomly go numb and have trouble moving them frequently along with a long list of other unexplainable symptoms. I have been prescribed an inordinate amount of medications of the years with only a few of them having any impact on my health. The Doctors I see can never figure out what to do with me and The Veterans Administration refused to treat me or even see me.

My health issues have kept me confined to the desk at work as it is too dangerous and unsafe for me to be on patrol until my health improves. Working in South Central/Watts/Compton areas on Patrol has been a great place to work and I have enjoyed it, however, with my health I am at an impasse as I can’t perform my job that I am hired to do. I really have run out of option.

I found out about HBOT that this can give me a new lease on life. I am hoping to cure or solve many of my health problems so I can once again enjoy life, be the father that I need to be to my now 13 year old son, and promote at work a well a put my full energy into my non-profit group I started (honorable Recharge) which is a group of Combat Veterans helping Combat Veterans so hopefully I can help others not go through the things I have been through.

I am very grateful to all involved in helping me receive HBOT treatments as I would have never been able to pay for them myself. This I a tremendous opportunity for me and I plan on paying it forward by documenting my experience and working to get legislation in California, similar to Oklahoma’s recently passed law that covers HBOT for Veterans.

Forever grateful for your more than generous gift.

Progress update coming soon….