The 2012 DAV Freedom Award was presented to Jarod Behee, a retired Army staff sergeant, who is a source of inspiration, strength, and enthusiasm to fellow participants. His is a story of triumph over adversity and survival. In 2005, during Behee’s second tour in Iraq, he volunteered for a security mission during which an enemy sniper shot him through the head. While that injury could easily have claimed his life, it instead gave him a new direction to serve and inspire his fellow Veterans.
Behee is one of the most familiar faces at the clinic, having improved remarkably by attending the event five times. While his wedding plans will take him away from the event this year, the benefits of having attended in the past are obvious. “The people here understand what I’m going through, and I’ve made a lot of friends,” he explains. “I notice significant differences in my cognitive abilities every year I come back. I can be more positive, and it gives me a more positive outlook on life,” adds Behee.