About Jim

Jim has written 3 articles so far, you can find them below.

Commander’s Drumbeat: Military Athletes Compete at Warrior Care Month Sitting Volleyball Tournament

Soldiers playing sitting volleyball block at the net

SGT Juan Alcivar, left, and SSG Jessie White block at the net during a sitting volleyball match between the Army and a Pentagon team of Navy Reservists at the Pentagon Athletic Center on Nov. 22. WTC hosted the All-Service Sitting Volleyball Tournament as a part of Warrior Care Month. Photo Credit: James R. Wenzel

By BG Darryl A. Williams, WTC Commander

The energy was off the charts yesterday as the Pentagon Athletic Center filled with people cheering on our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines—Active Duty, Guard, and Reserve—during the Army Warrior Transition Command Warrior Care Month Sitting Volleyball Tournament.  

 Across the Army this month, units and installations have hosted events and engaged local communities and media to highlight warrior care. This tournament was the Army’s Warrior Care Month pinnacle event in the National Capital Region.  I wish all of you could have experienced the excitement of being among so many people joined together celebrating these wounded, ill and injured men and women—celebrating their service, their abilities, and their amazing spirits. Among the attendees were several senior military leaders including the Vice Chief of Staff of the Army, Director of Army Staff and the Army Surgeon General. 

 Three of the four sitting volleyball teams were made up of wounded, ill, and injured service members—Army, Marines and a Joint team. The fourth team was a Pentagon team of Navy Reservists. I offer a huge shout out to the Pentagon team—they won the tournament with the Army taking second place. It wasn’t an easy win, these players gave their all.

 Army Sgt. Jonathan Duralde said it best, “The other teams were great; it was especially good to see the strategy of the Pentagon team. For us it was a competition and we were there to play regardless of the teams and regardless who won.”  

 Duralde, a below the knee amputee, wounded in Afghanistan in June 2010, recently reenlisted and is continuing on Active Duty. He is assigned to the Warrior Transition Battalion at Fort Belvoir and will soon start working in the Warrior Transition Command. 

 My biggest shout-out goes to all of the competitors. The tournament was about teamwork, cohesion and esprit d ‘corps. You all exemplify the best part of who we are.

 Not only did we see world class military athletes compete, we were privileged to have world class support and participation at this event. Well deserved shout-outs go to some special people:

  •  John Register, one of our tournament commentators. A Paralympics athlete and Army Veteran, he understands the healing power of sports and the significance it can play in the rehabilitation and recovery of our wounded, ill, and injured.
  •  John Kessel, Managing Director, Region Services, USA Volleyball. Kessel joined Register as a commentator and between the two of them kept everyone up to speed on each and every play with interviews about the power of adaptive sports and reconditioning activities between games.
  •  Kari Miller, a former Soldier who lost both her legs as the result of an auto accident involving a drunk driver, who went on to win a Paralympics silver medal in sitting volleyball in 2008. She taught the athletes the tips and tricks of sitting volleyball and refereed the tournament.
  •  Elliot Blake, Sitting Volleyball and Athlete Recruitment Coordinator, USA Volleyball. He also coached and refereed.
  •  Vic Breseford and his team from the Army Media & Visual Information Directorate. They did a super job with sound and getting us live coverage on DVIDS and the Pentagon Channel.
  •  Defense Media Activity (DMA) supported with visual and print staff.
  •  Candice Barlow-Jones. An invaluable member of the WTC team who lent her exceptional voice to our  national anthem, kicking off the event.

 Congratulations to all of the participants.

 I’d enjoy hearing about your Warrior Care Month plans and experiences. Please post your comments on this blog by clicking on the headline and scrolling to the bottom of the page to the comment box.

More information on events at WTUs around the country is available on the WTC website at http://www.wtc.army.mil/.

Warrior Care Month Concludes with Ribbon-Cutting of Screaming Eagle Medical Home

By: Jim Wenzel, STRATCOM

November has come to a close and with it so does Army Warrior Care Month. As the action officer responsible for facilitating the month’s activities across the Army and promoting the theme ‘Army Strong–Family Strong: caring for warriors by supporting Soldier Families’, I feel there can be no more fitting conclusion to the month than the ribbon-cutting of the first community-based primary care clinic at Fort Campbell on November 30th. The Surgeon General of the Army, LTG Eric B. Schoomaker, was present at the event to inaugurate a dramatic shift in the way Army Medicine treats the medical needs of our Soldiers’ Families.

Breaking the tradition of drawing Families to on-base Military Treatment Facilities (MTFs) for care, the Screaming Eagle Medical Home is the first of 17 soon-to-be constructed clinics located within the community. These new clinics are designed–much like Soldier Family Assistance Centers (SFAC) are for providing Warriors in Transition and their Families information and support services–to be a one-stop-shop for Family medical needs.

The accessibility and value these clinics provide cannot be overstated for spouses and children, who might otherwise spend the whole day traveling to an Army Hospital on post. The community-based primary health clinics are an innovation in expressing the mindset of Army leaders concerning Army Families.

Families provide a level of comfort, care, and support to Soldiers that cannot be found elsewhere. This support is especially critical during times of stress such as deployment and recovery from injury. By enhancing medical and warrior care programs designed to include a Soldier’s Family and meeting critical support needs of these individuals, Army leaders seek to improve the Soldier’s resiliency and ability to focus on the Army’s mission.  Although Army Warrior Care Month is over, the Army’s mission to strengthen Army Families by expanding its programs and policies to support them continues to march on.

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Warrior Transition Command Launches a New Public Website

By Jim Wenzel, WTC Stratcom

In response to the need for detailed information about the Army’s Warrior Care and Transition Program, the Warrior Transition Command (WTC) has created a new public website at www.wtc.army.mil.

This website provides wounded, ill, and injured Soldiers, Veterans, their Families, and the interested American public and media information about Army warrior care and support as well as specific information about various WTC programs. The WTC website also provides links to featured content from the WTC and AW2 blogs, valuable warrior care resources, photos, and other media.

The U.S. Army realizes that Army warrior care consists of many detailed processes and key players. Shedding light on the key information that wounded warriors and their Families need most, the WTC website is intended to help the warrior care community achieve their goal–to successfully transition wounded warriors back to duty or to civilian life.

From sharing information about the Medical Evaluation Board (MEB) to information about the Comprehensive Transition Plan (CTP), the WTC is committed to providing easy to understand information that is relevant for wounded warriors and Families. Accessible from work or home, the WTC website will help guide wounded warriors through the healing and recovery process.

The WTC website will be updated frequently as new programs and events are made available so check back often. If you have any questions about the website or for someone on the WTC staff, please email warriorcarecommunications@conus.army.mil.

Write a blog for WTC

Warriors in Transition can submit a blog by e-mailing WarriorCareCommunications [at] conus.army.mil.