25 November 2012 - Like many veterans who return from combat, David Kurttila of Hot Springs described himself as just "blowing in the wind" after he came home from serving with the National Guard in Iraq.
Some soldiers — Kurttila among them — who cannot make a successful transition back to civilian life end up drifting or becoming homeless.
For a small group of struggling area vets, there is new hope from a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs program that offers them work apprenticeships. The intent is to help them find future employment and also forge a new path to a better, more stable life.
And for a half-dozen of those local soldiers, that rebirth all starts in a cemetery.
Kurttila is one of six local veterans in the VA Black Hills Health Care System who have become the newest full-time employees at the Black Hills National Cemetery near Sturgis. read more>>>