Sgt. Craig Carp’s eight years, eight months, and 15 days in the US Marine Corps were anything but uneventful. “I fell through a roof in 2003, was blown up in 2004, and was medevac’d again in 2006,” he recalled. When he was medically retired in 2010, Carp was suffering from PTSD, a traumatic brain injury, shoulder and back problems, and speech and hearing issues. He moved around, struggling with pain, and confronting frequent obstacles to finding the medical and psychological treatment he needed.
Last summer, Carp moved to South Carolina and within a few months was working with NMCRS Combat Casualty Assistance Nurse, Kim Bradley. “She helped me start over. She actually saved my life,” Carp said. “I was in a dark place when I moved to South Carolina. Kim Bradley is the best case manager I’ve ever had. She doesn’t sugar coat things. She’ll give you direction and expect you to follow it. She gives you the tools to succeed and she actually cares, but she doesn’t feel sorry for you.”
Bradley encouraged Carp to finish his bachelor’s degree. He has re-enrolled in school, pursuing business management, attends class six days a week, took 21 credits last semester, and has earned a 3.14 GPA.
“I still have a long way to go in the healing process,” Carp said, “But Kim helps me put things in perspective. She’s a guiding force.”
Carp is motivated to keep going every day by his daughter, who turns one this month. But Bradley is who he credits with helping him figure out how best to cope day after day. “She helped me find a primary care doctor, get connected with a good counselor at the VA, and ensured I was receiving all my earned benefits,” Carp explained. “There are a whole lot of people I don’t deal with, but Kim is a saint.”