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Guitars For Vets

Tom Knuth was at a VA Medical Center when he saw a flyer for a new program, Guitars For Vets. Now more than 11 years ago, this was the beginning of a long road for Knuth and for many others it began this way too. The only difference is the Knuth began teaching instead of learning. Already a guitar player from childhood and teacher it was clear that it would be a good fit.

“I wanted to give back. When I got out of the military I didn’t know which way to turn. I don’t want anyone to feel that way,”

In 2007, Patrick Nettesheim, a Milwaukee guitar instructor was introduced to Vietnam-era Marine Dan Van Buskirk. Van Buskirk struggled with PTSD and wanted to learn guitar to reap the therapeutic benefits that can come with playing. After a few months, the two came up with the idea for Guitars For Vets and grew their roots in Milwaukee. Now a national certified 501(c) 3 non- profit, the organization has 100 chapters across the country and hopes to have 200 by the year 2020.

Knuth, who has been teaching with Guitars For Vets since the beginning, added, “If you don’t have anything other than work, who knows what other hobbies you are going to pick up. Playing gives you direction,”. With weekly lessons and levels varying from advanced to beginner, Guitars For Vets has something for everyone. By creating a place for positive human interaction without alcohol or substances the organization has helped many veterans and their families.

Check out www.guitars4vets.org to find a local chapter and get more information.

Connect with Tom Knuth and the Milwaukee Chapter by emailing; littletommygk@aol.com

 

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