Skip to main content
        Listen to Spreaker

Tag: police officer

Retired Officer Albert Veldstra, How 30 years as a cop and an Officer Involved Shooting affected him and his family

Albert Veldstra, who has 30 years as a police officer in Stanislas County in the California central valley, sits down with the FF deconstructed and tells his story of how 30 years on the job and an officer involved shooting affected him and his family. He talks about how he recovered and now helps struggling first responders heal and find hope. You are going to love this guy.

Former Dispatcher Ricardo Martinez, #iam911

Founder of the #Iam911 movement, former 911 dispatcher Ricardo Martinez sits down and shares his story on this episode. Ricardo is the host of the Within the Trenches podcast and is about to release episode 400. He is doing amazing work for dispatchers throughout the country. His passion is sharing the stories of dispatchers and helping them process the trauma they experience on the job. He has started his own media company, hosts and participates in conferences, all dedicated to dispatchers. I really can’t say enough about this guy. You just gotta listen.

Ellen Kirschman PhD, How to Love a Firefighter

Ellen Kirschman, known as the Cop Doc, is a clinical psychologist that specializes in treating first responders and has been for doing for years and years and years. She is the author of “I Love a Cop” and the recently released second edition of “I Love a Firefighter”. Ellen talks about the specific mental health issues that Wildland firefighters and their families face. We also talk about the importance of seeing a culturally competent therapist and the reasons why. Ellen is a invaluable resource of knowledge and experience in taking care of first responders and our mental health. She is no nonsense and says, “The stigma is stupid!” Ellen also writes fiction and is a clinician at WCPR.

Former Firefighter Josh Johnson Wandered Lost Until He Asked For Help

The amazing Josh Johnson, former firefighter, shares his story of getting PTSD and the agony of not knowing where to turn to for help. The point came where Josh’s only answer he could find was almost killing himself with alcohol. He went to work to ask for help and ended up getting fired. Josh truly is an inspiration as he went from trying to kill himself to the incredible attitude and viewpoint that he has now. His focus now is passing this message on to others so they don’t end up suffering a lone as he did for so long. Josh articulates his story very well. I have a good feeling we will hear from him again on this show.

Tessa Dunn – Rockstar Wife That Held a First Responder's Family Together

Tessa Dunn is on the show! Tessa is the wife of Tom Dunn, who was on the show a few months ago. She stood by Tom’s side as he worked as a Alaska State Trooper. She raised a couple of kids and took care of the family out in the middle of nowhere. When Tom became a State Trooper little did they know That Tessa would became part of the job and experience her own trauma plus helping Tom deal with his trauma. Her and Tom have started Reset Training and Consulting where they help first responders with stress on the job through training in Resiliency, Engaging and Empowering Communities, Soul Care, Employee Retention and Training. Tess is a positive force to be reckoned with! You can’t help but feel good after listening to Tess talk and share her story.

Conrad Weaver, Producer of the Film, PTSD911

The Firefighter Deconstructed sits down with Conrad Weaver, an award winning filmmaker, producer and president of Conjo studios. Conrad is making a documentary film about us, about what first responders go through on the job and the price we pay for doing what we do. The film i scalled 911PTSD. He is traveling all over the united states recording our stories. His goal of the film is to create awareness and help smash the stigma around mental health for first responders. Near the end of the podcast Conrad and I talk about how he had to change careers and find a new purpose. He talks about how he did this and keeps his eyes on his purpose every day. I found it very inspiring.

Where to find Conrad and film info:
To Donate to the film:

The Similarities of a TBI and PTSD, ret CHP Sgt Paula Siddens

Paula Siddens is a retired Sergeant with the California Highway Patrol with 30 years of service. Paula sustained a serious Traumatic Brain Injury while riding her bike down Mt. Diablo. She was lucky to even survive the accident. Paula and I have also been friends for quite some time but it’s been a long time since we have seen each other.. We recently met up at a training session for the support dog training program, First Response K9. We started talking about my PTSD and her Traumatic Brain Injury. We found that so many of our symptoms were the same. Similar family issues and collateral damage also came up. On this episode we talk about Paula’s accident and the similarities of our journeys. This episode helps to demonstrate how PTSD/PTSI is a true physiological brain injury, not just some emotional problem.

Assistant Fire Chief Steve Serbic – Undercover Mental Health and His Own Story

The amazing Steve Serbic from the Undercover Mental Health Podcast sit down with me and tells us his story. Steve is a assistant fire chief, key note speaker, Tedx presenter, author and mental health advocate. Steve rose up through the fire service, and is currently working as an Assistant Chief of operations at Surrey Fire Service, Greater Vancouver Metropolitan Area in Canada. He prides himself on being a devoted husband and father of two amazing kids. He survived his battle with depression thanks to the support of his family and friends. That support allowed him to rebuild his life and now he helps others who have decided to fight their anxiety, depression and mental illness. Steve is very open and raw about his own battles with mental illness and travels across North America sharing his story.
You can find Steve at:
Ted Talk:
Undercover Mental Health Podcast:

ret Fire Captain Tim Grutzius – Super Anger to Peace and PTSD

Tim Grutzius is a 25+ year fire service veteran and a team member of the Illinois Firefighter Peer Support . He understands the detrimental effect stress can have on the overall wellbeing of our mind, body, and spirit. He is also a Certified Personal Trainer and Health Coach, he has a diploma in Holistic Health Practice, a certificate in Wellness Consulting and is a certified Usui Reiki Master Practitioner. Tim was diagnosed with PTSD and had a tough struggle out of it, but he is out of it. Now he works to help all those first responders who are struggling.
Twitter: @holisticff
Illinois Firefighter Peer Support


By continuing to browse our website, you agree to our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy , and you are acknowledging that you have read them and agree by clicking accept.

Yes, I accept!