Video by Joseph Andrew Lee and Eric Brandner
BETHESDA, Md.—Sometimes, the mental grind of a recovery can be as tough as the physical obstacles.
That’s why the USO recently opened the second of two Warrior and Family Centers at Naval Support Activity Bethesda, the home of Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
“You can come here and cook food if you want to. You can come here and barbecue if you want to. You can come here and watch movies, play video games, learn music, use the Internet … all that is here,” said medically retired Army Sgt. Kevin Gatson, a recent patient at Bethesda. “I think this will give someone a place to kind of sit back, reflect, relax, work on themselves just on a personal level — a worry-free zone in a sense.”
Like it’s sister center on the Fort Belvoir Community Hospital campus in Virginia, the USO Warrior and Family Center at Bethesda provides a place where families can come together for everything from meals and game nights to post-military career counseling and classes.
More from the USO
Sep 1, 2021
Military Suicide Rates Are at an All-Time High; Here’s How We’re Trying to Help
Current suicide rates among active-duty military members are at an all-time high since record-keeping began after 9/11 and have been increasing over the past five years at an alarmingly steady pace. Here is how the USO is trying to help service members and military families prevent military suicide.
Mar 18, 2021
Inside the Special Mission of Supporting Wounded Service Members at USO Bethesda
Wounded or ill service members often have a challenging recovery journey ahead of them that can take months, or even years. For those recuperating at Walter Reed Medical Center, they can turn to the USO Warrior and Family Center at Bethesda, Maryland, for support and a home away from home.