Def Leppard Drummer Rick Allen, Marine Help Injured Vets with PTSD


"A lot of them, they won't share this information with their wife and in an hour we've learned things about them that they haven't shared with their wife who's sitting right next to them," Roberts said. "It's strange. They don't know us, but they feel comfortable enough when they are in these groups, and they hear us being very honest and open with our past, and they feel it's OK to start talking."

"It's a wonderful way to draw people in -- through shared trauma," Allen said. "And the warriors realize they're not alone."

The "Warrior Gatherings" started in 2009 and are now in their third tour with the band. Roberts said they give the warriors notice that they will be talking about PTSD before show.

"It's interesting in an hour time frame we've gotten people to open up," he said. "They have talked about suicide. They have talked about the anger, some of the marital struggles that are going on in the homefront."

One of their end goals in hosting these sessions is to educate the public that suffering from PTSD is normal.

"This can happen to anyone whether you're a warrior or a rock star or civilian," Roberts said. "We want to tell people it's OK to ask for help. Asking for help is not a weakness. It really takes a stronger person to ask for help than to sit home in silence, suffering, not moving forward with your life."

Roberts and Allen, two friends from different sides of the pond and different sides of the military-civilian divide, are helping veterans heal, and in the process, they are healing themselves.

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