Climbing Mount Everest brings new awareness to an old hell


Bringing attention to soldiers suffering from PTSD was the driving force behind the formation of Team USX. For the past five years, more U.S. soldiers have died from suicide than enemy attacks in Iraq and Afghanistan according to USX.

Their mission is to shed light on the stigma that centers on soldier post-traumatic stress disorder, while guiding veterans in their transition back to civilian life through challenging expeditions that inspire camaraderie and purpose. Second Lt. Harold Earls, a recent West Point graduate, developed the idea of USX while a cadet in the U.S. Military Academy.

His goal is to do more than bring awareness to PTSD, but to also do something about it by creating expeditions that mirror being part of a mission-oriented unit and team in combat. Mount Everest is the first of many planned expeditions for USX.

Earls was joined in this mission of awareness by retired Command Sgt. Major Todd Burnett in co-founding USX. Burnett suffers from PTSD and holds a horrific record of surviving the most IED attacks in the Army at more than 45.

Video and photos courtesy Harold Earls, Dave Ohlson, and Pitch Publicity.