Connected Warriors: A Vietnam Veteran Rides The Edge

Originally posted on the Connected Warriors Let’s Talk Facebook page:

By Randy Hamlin

As I was driving home tonight, I stopped for a red light and 4 guys on Harleys pulled up next to me and one yelled over “Noticed your Purple Heart license plate, Thanks for Serving!”

All 4 were Iraqi Vets down from Chicago heading to the Keys. As they roared off with the sound that only a Harley makes, I flashed back to the days of having the feeling of steel and power between my legs. Ya, the old days… I not only rode for the feeling of pure freedom but it took me to my edge.

552595_3631198373825_81800667_nAfter being discharged from the military and having feelings of dis-association and isolation, the absence of “unit” and “brotherhood” I took refuge with the asphalt and the bike. As the light turned green, I looked over in the passenger seat and saw my rolled up yoga mat. I chuckled knowing I have that “unit”, that “brotherhood”, with CONNECTED WARRIORS.


At the close of 2012, I look back and remember when the inception began and Judy Weaver and Ralph Iovino just started getting vets to come to yoga and seeing now where Connected Warriors is, is amazing… After only a couple of years and a whole lot of dedicated volunteers who believe and know this mission works, we are serving over 600 vets and their families in 9 states every month and have taught 245 Certified Yoga Teachers… How fulfilling for me to travel from location to location documenting this through photos and text, meeting many vets, families, teachers and their assistants.

My Edge?   I’ve found it…


4 thoughts on “Connected Warriors: A Vietnam Veteran Rides The Edge”

  1. Thank yor for sharing your transition and describing your external power (and I love biking & bikers) and now consciously taking this source of energy within your breath, body, mind and spirit. Yoga and Tai Chi are the best there is for stress management, health promotion and fitness.I know how difficult it is to make the transition from a military culture to a society that is lost in time and space and has no way to identify with where you have been and what you have experienced with your Warrior adventure and journey. Yoga and our integrative methods are just what we need to slow us down as we can ask ourselves, ‘what is happening’ — Here and Now. And, become mindful of the fact you have gone from one end of Life’s continuum to the other with excessive and extreme stressors on the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and social systems..

    With Yoga, we can relax, slow down and enjoy our new adventure into joining and returning to our True Nature.

    thank you for your Service….We are One!!!

  2. Hey Gerald, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I really appreciate your words and understanding my words. I can tell you’ve been down the same roads that I have traveled and it goes well with me to know there are other brothers and sisters that are making the transition through yoga and other forms of healing. It is my hope that others will be able to experience what we have. It’s never too late…. thanks again…

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