Since April of this year, Paul Nichols has been riding across the country on horseback to raise awareness for Canadian Veterans.
Paul Nichols, was in the army for eight years, serving in Croatia in 1993.
Speaking to Shane Foxman on the Weekend Show on Sunday, Nichols says he realizes how hard it is to transition into regular civilian life after being in the army.
“I came home from the war…and moved to Quennell, and like most communities they think of veterans as a 92 year old man who stormed the beaches at Normandy. And that made me question the value of my own service, question the value of my sacrifice. And I struggled.”
Paul says the biggest support came from his family and his home.
“When I did find that support, it was life changing. And I needed to share that with my brothers, and that’s the idea of my ride.”
Paul’s wife Terry, a therapeutic riding instructor has been helping other veterans join in on the ride as Paul travels through their community.
“It’s an awareness campaign, and horses attract a lot of attention. The horses draw a crowd, it introduces communities to their veterans, and it helps us bring that awareness to communities.”
Terry says around 240 veterans have joined them on the ride.
“The youngest was 20, and the oldest was 92…they join us for an average of half a day. We really want to showcase veterans in their community, and the changing face of Canadian veterans.”
The couple started the ride at the legislature building in Victoria, and are in Montreal today.