Physical therapy in officer’s bones
November 10, 2010 11:48AM
Lt. Ryan Pommier performs a spinal manipulation on a patient. | Submitted by the U.S. Navy
Updated: April 19, 2011 5:09AM
Navy Lt. Ryan R. Pommier says his desire to serve in the military goes back to his time as a youth, especially after hearing of his grandfather’s experiences while serving in the Navy during World War II under Gen. Douglas McArthur.
He recalls the stories of his grandfather Russell Scent, and of his grandfather asking him what was he was going to do to show his patriotism.
His grandfather died on Veterans Day in 2007, so this weighed on Pommier. He soon decided to join the armed forces to share his expertise in physical therapy, a profession he had long before joining.
Pommier, son of Debbie and Fred Darnell of Plainfield, serves on the USS George Washington as a physical therapist, treating some of the 5,500 sailors aboard for musculoskeletal disorders and conditions such as back strains and knee and foot pain.
Pommier enjoys what he does and would like to make it a career. When he completes his service in the military, he says he would like to work at military facility that will allow to keep helping the troops.
“Professional opportunity is great in the military. I enjoy treating service members. I like to contribute and help our troops,” he says.
“I miss everybody back home, my family and friends. I’m doing fine and having a great time. Go Bears!”
Pommier plans on coming home for the holidays, either for Christmas or perhaps for New Year’s.
“We love him very much, and we are very proud of him and we look forward to him coming home this Christmas,” Pommier’s mom says.
Mom and dad are planning a welcome home party for Pommier with family and friends.
Pommier attended Officer Development School at the Officer Training Command in Newport, R.I. His first active duty tour was at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth, Va., 11 months before being assigned to the USS George Washington in Japan. He has served more than 19 months of active duty. He is a 1993 graduate of Plainfield High School.
Pommier has a doctorate degree in physical therapy and bachelor’s degree in biology, with a minor in psychology.
Prior to joining the Navy, he worked as a physical therapist in Sandwich.
We at The Herald-News wish Pommier and veterans a happy Veterans Day!
Following are local members of the military that have been deployed and/or reported for duty and who will not be home for Veterans Day:
Lt. Meredith M. Albrecht, Navy pilot, of Shorewood.
Air Force Airman 1st Class Jacob Bradley of Braidwood.
Army Spc. Steven Burnand of Plainfield.
Marine Cpl. Jacob Eaton of Lockport.
Army Reserve Staff Sgt. William H. DeVries of Wilmington.
Army Spc. Thomas Guerino and Pvt. Kurtis Donald, both of Plainfield.
Army Ranger Sgt. Raymond L. Haldorson of Plainfield.
Air Force Maj. Brent Toth, aircraft commander, of Shorewood,
Reporting for duty
Marine Pvt. Jack E. Griffin, son of Gary and Vick Griffin of Shorewood, graduated from the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego on Sept. 17 after completing three months of basic training. He completed Marine combat training at Camp Pendleton, Calif., on Oct. 26 and is currently stationed at Fort Lee, Va., specializing in metal working/welding.
Other Military News
On Veterans Day, Joliet Area Historical Museum, 204 N. Ottawa St., offers free admission for veterans and active duty military personnel with ID from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. For information on honoring a loved one with a plaque on the Wall of Honor, contact the development director at 814-723-5201, ext. 222, or visit www.jolietmuseum.org.
Area veterans invited to a free benefits seminar at 4 p.m. Nov. 11 at Essington Place Retirement Community, 901 Essington Road in Joliet.
The seminar, led by Bernie Esberner of Respect the Vet, will shed light on the little-known VA Aid and Attendance program, which provides eligible veterans and surviving spouses up to $2,582 per month, tax-free. The VA estimates that 100,000 people are eligible, but many are unaware these benefits exist.
To meet eligibility, a veteran must have served at least 90 days, with one day during a declared war, among other requirements. To R.S.V.P. or to learn more, call Essington Place at 815-744-4488.
New home for soldier
Homes for Our Troops will present the key to a new home at 25107 Island Drive in Plainfield for Army Spc. Frank Pierson and his wife, Arielle Carrol Pierson, at 11 a.m. Nov. 13.
In 2008, just three months after being deployed to Baghdad, Pierson was left a double amputee after an electrically fired projectile (EFP) tore through the vehicle he was driving and hit both his legs. This new home has been adapted to accommodate all Pierson’s needs.
After his injury, Pierson spent 19 months at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., for treatment and rehabilitation.
During the week of Veterans Day, Homes for Our Troops will launch the “100 More Homes for Our Troops Campaign.” Homes for Our Troops is a national nonprofit organization with a mission to build specially adapted homes for service members severely injured in combat operations since Sept. 11, 2001.
For more information, visit www.homesforourtroops.org
Flags for vets
Joliet Central ROTC students erected 60 flagpoles and placed U.S. flags on each pole to form the Avenue of Flags at Lincoln National Cemetery in Elwood on Nov. 10 in prepration for Veterans Day for their community service project.
I am looking for military personnel that will not be home for the Christmas holiday. Call 815-439-5312 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.