[caption id="attachment_3884" align="alignleft" width="300"] Army Spc. Shawn Porter of the Texas National Guard demonstrates the archery equipment he will use during the inaugural Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo., May 10-14, 2010. U.S. Air Force photo by Chief Master Sgt. Gonda Moncada[/caption] AUSTIN, Texas,â€“ A Texas National Guard soldier receiving treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder hopes to get a boost in his recovery by competing in the inaugural Warrior Games this week in Colorado Springs, Colo.
Army Spc. Shawn Porter will compete in the 10-meter air rifle standing/non-supported and the 30-meter recurve-bow open events.The 136th Military Police Battalion soldier deployed to Afghanistan in 2009. While recovering from surgery at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany in November, Porter was diagnosed with PTSD and transported to Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, where has been undergoing treatment when heâ€™s not at the shooting range.â€œThe intense six- to eight-hour rifle and archery training is helping me to quiet my brain,â€Â he said. â€œWhen I shoot, I can only focus on one thing, and I believe the sport has helped me therapeutically.â€Â Porter said he used to be one of those soldiers who donâ€™t believe in PTSD. â€œThis has been a real eye-opener for me,â€Â he said. â€œThe PTSD did not manifest itself after I returned from Iraq, but was [was] diagnosed when I returned for surgery from Afghanistan during my second deployment.â€Â Porter said he wanted to return to Afghanistan after his surgery, but the PTSD prevented that from happening. â€œIt is an illness, and because I am seeing my psychologist twice a week, I am making great progress,â€Â he said. â€œWhen I returned home, I could not cope with being a dad and husband, and my family deserves that I get good treatment.â€Â The sport is a healing aid, Porter said, because it has allowed his competitive nature to come to the forefront. â€œI am confident that I will bring back medals,â€Â he said, â€œand I want my fellow soldiers to know that I will be doing it for the 136th MP Battalion in Tyler, Texas.â€Â Porter is a part-time soldier. When heâ€™s not activated for military duty, he manages an outdoor sports warehouse in civilian life. He has been training with archery coach Skip Dawson. â€œHe has the patience and intelligence to do it,â€Â Dawson said of Porterâ€™s ability to compete in archery events. â€œHe is physically in very good shape, and his stance and form are very good.â€Â Competition comes naturally to Porter, who likes to hike, fish, hunt and ski. He trains every day. I canâ€™t stand to stay home and do nothing,â€Â Porter said. â€œI just have to stay busy.â€Â The Warrior Games, which kick off today, feature some 200 of the most athletic wounded active-duty members and military veterans in Paralympic-style competition. The U.S. Olympic Committee is hosting the games at the Olympic Training Center. Events will include shooting, swimming, archery, track, discus, shot put, cycling, sitting volleyball and wheelchair basketball. May 10, 2010: By Air Force Chief Master Sgt. Gonda Moncada- Texas National Guard