Operation Comfort is an Unusual Rehab Concept
Many soldiers and Marines are returning from the Gulf War seriously wounded. Some of the wounds are physical and some are emotional. Some are severe, some not so severe. Operation Comfort provides much needed care for any man or woman from any branch of the military.
Janis Roznowski is a flight attendant for American Airlines. On March 18, 2003 she began working flights that were taking men and women in and out of the Middle East. After several missions she began taking pictures of the soldiers and Marines and sending them along to the families with a personal letter.
In Aug 2003 she started visiting the wounded in Landsthul, Germany and later visited Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, Texas. She found a need to provide some sense of normalcy to the soldiers and Marines trying to overcome physical and mental challenges as a result of their wounds.
Roznowski conceived and started Operation Comfort. It supports all branches of the Armed Services and the families whenever possible.
Operation Comfort focuses on helping the wounded as they go through rehab at Brooke Army Medical Center. The help from Operation Comfort is structured to improve the soldier’s spirit so that rehab can occur faster and be more effective.
Operation Comfort has helped fund and coordinate the refitting of two soldier’s day rooms. They have installed large screen TV’s, computers, sofas, recliners, books, videos, carpet, paint and wall decorations. Other facility and telecommunications projects are being done to satisfy more needs.
Funding is needed to get the wounded soldiers to the Paralympic Games, ski trips, and similar activities.
Outings have included a fishing trip to Galveston with a tour of the NASA Johnson Space Center included.
There was also a trip to Charley’s Guest Ranch where there were activities such as boating, fishing, hiking, canoeing, ballroom dancing and various games. All of the activities are adaptive activities to help the wounded gain confidence and strength to aid the rehab process.
There was an amputee surfing trip to Pismo Beach, CA. This is the amputee surfing capital of the world. Rodney Miller, an amputee, provided the wounded soldiers and Marines with instruction in “amp surfing.”
The Barn Door Restaurant in San Antonio offers “Operation Comfort Special Dinners” every Monday night and provides a cost reduction of 50% on the all menu items for those in rehab.
The newest project undertaken by Operation Comfort is “Automotivation.” This started to be auto mechanic and auto body projects but has expanded to include motorcycles. Shop space has been donated, but there is a great need for any tools or materials from sanding disks to welding machines. There is a “Wish List” available from Operation Comfort that has the needed items listed.
The Patriot Guard Riders has become involved with Operation Comfort in addition to the work they do escorting soldiers as they return home. Many of the Patriot Guard missions are the sad ones as funeral escorts. The PGR is pleased to be helping Operation Comfort by asking the members to contribute any unneeded motorcycle parts from cables to frames to motors. They have had a good response from the emails they sent out asking for donations of motorcycle parts.
Operation Comfort is asking for the public to help these soldiers and Marines. Any type of useable automotive hand tools, tool boxes, sanding disks, or automotive type sandpaper, or nearly anything related to auto body work can be used and will be greatly appreciated by the soldiers that will benefit from them. As mentioned earlier any parts or products related to motorcycle building and maintenance is greatly needed.
The information about the needed items or making donations can be obtained by contacting Operation Comfort, 4900 Broadway, Suite 400 San Antonio, TX 78209.
You may also contact Operation Comfort by phone at 210-826-0500; the fax number is 210-826-0509.
The email address for Operation Comfort is: operationcomfortEsbcglobal.net
Janis Roznowski can be contacted at: Jroz123@sbcglobal.net