Soldier took his life, family mourns with anger
Posted: Jun 23, 2012
By Courtney Collen
Trevor Gould at 25 years old was an active member of the United States Army out of Fort Hood, Texas.
He was job hunting in his hometown of Fulda, MN, for the summer but would head back to school in Mankato in the fall.
“Everybody loved him. He had a heart of gold. He always wanted to be a leader,” Sheri Johnson said.
Sheri Johnson is Trevor’s mom. After Trevor served overseas in 2010, his mom said he changed, he had Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, or PTSD.
Just last week, he took his life which is fifteen years after his dad took his.
After Trevor died, Sheri looked through his military paperwork and shocked by what she saw.
“I found out he had talked to doctors in the Army saying he was suicidal. They didn’t contact me, they didn’t send him to help, they just pushed the paperwork through. That’s the only way I found out is through military papers,” Sheri said.
She’s angry because she claims nobody back home was told about what Trevor was going through. Brother-in-law Chad Deblieck was also in the military and tells us it’s no surprise that Trevor kept to himself.
“A lot of soldiers that come back and don’t acknowledge the issues are involved with PTSD. Trevor was a strong guy, he didn’t want to admit there were issues, just like every other soldier is expected to be strong,” Chad Deblieck said.
And he believes the Army should have tried to do more.
“There’s a lot of help out there. There’s just no connection between them lining anything up when he comes home. He was just expected to go out and do it himself, and most of them won’t,” Deblieck said.
The family says the state of Minnesota never got a copy of Trevor’s health records when he returned home. If it had, they believe it could have made a difference.
“There’s a huge part of me that’s gone, that’s just gone and won’t come back,” Sheri Johnson said.
Sheri’s now looking into making a change, which is why the family took part in Saturday’s ‘Helpline Center’s Step Forward to Prevent Suicide’. She believes no family should go through this. And she would give the world to tell her son one more thing.
“I love you baby. Why didn’t you come to your mother? I would have turned the world upside down for him but now it’s too late,” Sheri Johnson said.
If you or anyone you know is suffering from depression, PTSD or shows suicidal signs: contact the Helpline Centerhttp://www.helplinecenter.org/
Posts from Trever Gould Memorial Facebook Page:
I’m just a single mother that hurts like hell because she lost her son to combat PTSD and wishes that there would have been someone like me out there fighting for things to change and give help to our veterans before my son had to die!! Some way for me to realize that there were ones yelling out about PTSD suicides I know if I would of really knew what PTSD was and that it was real I would of know what to do to save him. Trever was such a great man and would have given the shirt off his back to anyone. He had a heart of gold that was broken down to the point of no return. He was a giver and did not get the same in return. Every time we lose a veteran we failed and for dam sure the system failed him. I sit and wonder how people would feel in my shoes. I also feel like I am failing them and Trever when I can’t get people to listen and help stop this from going on. Really sit and think 1 veteran or active duty military dies every 65 minutes, so when you’re watching a movie or your favorite reality show and maybe on your computer we have someone that was willing to give their life for us dying inside and taking their own life. The pain is just too much. I know Trever did not want to die, he had even told me that one time, but he still took his life because the pain was too much. I would live on the street if it would give my son a chance to live his life like he deserved to. I would even give my life if it would bring him back. But there is no chance for him and there is a chance for others and I will give every penny and every second I can to help those heroes their chance to living a life without the hell they are in. I wish everyone would realize every dollar makes a huge difference for their lives. Every dollar goes to get our veterans and active duty military, doctors, treatment, service dogs, and all the other programs we have. I cry every time hear we lose another veteran and feel that we need to even work faster than the fast forward mode we are already doing. Everyone 1 veteran is 1 to many to lose and it’s up to us.
From February 2013:
I spend hours every day on making a difference and praying I can at least help even one Hero! I get maybe 3 to 4 hrs. a night to be able to even sleep. It is worth it to me though because I give a damn! Look at my son in the pictures below and see he is real and he is gone, because he could not get the help he needed. He even went to his higher ups and just got ignored! Well I will not ignore or be afraid to hit this epidemic head on. When I spend hours working on this mission along with my job, school and training the service dog, I just pray that sometime someday it will reach across the nation and some special individuals will see it and want to help and join in with the battle on PTSD. We have so many great people out there doing their thing and way to help our heroes, but it all takes money. I hold nothing back and am a very honest person I am here to tell you since I am in school I have a job that I only make a little over $9 hr., but I take every spare penny I have or don’t have to help our veterans. So don’t think every penny doesn’t matter, because it does. I will be on the radio on March 6th and in Iowa to speech with other parents that have lost their babies. When I need the strength to keep going all I have to do is look at Trever’s pictures and the pain I have realize once again why I am doing this.
From Feb 2013
Ok everyone I am going to spill my heart out here. In hopes that maybe some of you will understand what I say, how and what I feel! I started this mission 20 minutes after I found my sons lifeless body. I had already closed his eyes said my OMGs repeatedly as I was trying to think of ways to solve this and make him better. Because it’s our job as a mother to make things better for our children no matter what the problems is. I was in shock and thought I was having a more then life like dream, because my son would never do this. Then it hit me that OMG my son was so hurting inside that he couldn’t come to me and that he hated life so much he didn’t even want to be alive. That tore me up so much inside that there are no words to describe it. Trever and I were so very close anytime I had a problem he was there for me to help me through it. I did the same for him and I know he knew I loved him and I knew he loved me. BUT here comes the big problems after deployment and getting out of the service. You come home and every one of your friends has no clue what you have gone through over there. They have all moved on with their lives, but the veteran has had his or her life on hold for at least 4 years. So they all have girlfriends or boyfriends and maybe even children already. So number 1 you have nobody around you that you can talk to or even understand were your head is at. Number 2 everyone went on with their lives and expectedly so. Then they go to try and find a job that is another chop on the ego, because nobody wants to hire someone that in the last 4 years was in the military and no work references, because who are they going to call to check you out. So they want the ones that have stayed around and have checkable work references so you are broke and think you are worthless and hurt like hell because you were willing to die for these same people that will not hire you. Then they get into relationships and fall deeply in love with the one, but you have no job or a crappy one if you do that puts a huge strain of a person. Then the parents in no shape or form think you are good enough for their child because they will make more money then you will so you are given choices if you want to stay with them. So you have hardly any money and the one you are seeing has nothing best the best attitude. Where are they to turn, because they feel so much older after they have been gone sees old friends with families and feel by now you should long ways down that road also, but you were married to the military and missed out of a normal life. The person you love is talking with another person and you are afraid you are going to lose them to the other one or they cheated. There’s another slug in the gut. So no job, no money, in a messed up relationship, you feel you have nobody to talk to. You can’t sleep at night because of the night terrors and sweats. The flashbacks are so life like you are scared to death, you feel just worthless thanks to things that are out of your hands. All you do is think so badly of yourself and feel that is never going to get better. You don’t want to bring your family down, feel like a coward if you ask for help or put them through hell like you think you already have. You just want it to stop right there and at that minute. Knowing my son went through all that I knew right there I had to do something to stop this dam problem we have for our veterans. I will not get Trever back but I will be dammed if I don’t bust my butt trying to save others from dying. I will give my all and all I ask is for your help to do it! Help me save a veteran or active duty troops with PTSD! They depend on us. If I can give my all I think you all have my back and our veterans back.
A comment from Keri at 22 Too Many: “As long as I’ve known Sheri, which was shortly after Trever died, she has been working tirelessly, and still is, to help our veterans, our military members, and their families. She gives herself daily to this crucial cause. Thank you, Sheri.”