Staff Sargent Stephen Dockray spent 10 years in the Army as an Infantry Mortarman. During his deployment, Stephen was involved in an explosion and in the chaos, stepped on a piece of hot, dirty shrapnel that cut through his boot and into his foot. He also began having migraines. As soldiers do, he got himself bandaged up, took some Advil, and soldiered on. In the months to come, he developed cancer in his foot while still on active duty. He was treated and became cancer free, thanks to the Army doctors.
But it left him with a limp, a cane, and terrible pain in his foot and legs.
In 2015, Stephen was medically retired and was designated to receive 100% and permanent support from the VA. After 6 months and draining his savings, the VA still had not come through with his support.
Thankfully, Stephen found Defenders of Freedom and because of our generous donors, was able to get help to pay his bills and keep a roof over his families' head while he waited on the VA.
Over the next couple of years, Stephen was diagnosed with a myriad of issues. Before it was over with, Stephen had multiple surgeries to address his pain, started having seizures, was taking 27 medications a day, and receiving injections in his head so painful that he had to be strapped down.
This lead to more issues than you can even imagine. He had no quality of life.
But it all culminated with life threatening brain swelling and a stay in the ICU. That's when Defenders of Freedom founder, Donna Cranston, finally convinced Stephen to get the cutting edge brain treatment she knew would change his life!
On April 15th, Stephen started not only non-invasive treatment for his brain, but treatment for the pain in his legs as well. The entire cost of the treatment was provided by generous donors. He has been home for more than 2 months now. He has been able to stop taking almost all of his medication.
"The doctor at the clinic spent so much time with me. I really felt listened to. That's never happened before," Stephen said. "I feel so much better than I did when I first went to Colorado for treatment. This has been a life altering experience for my family."
This wouldn't happen without caring people... donors make all of this happen. They gave Stephen's life back. They gave a husband and a father back.