Documentary premieres in Louisville, highlights struggles of PTSD

Published: Jul. 6, 2016 at 8:51 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 7, 2016 at 2:25 AM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A new documentary aims to raise awareness for veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

"Reinforcements" follows Travis Davis, a retired Army corporal, who is dealing with PTSD after his return from serving in Afghanistan.

As he struggles to adapt to life back at home, he met retired Army Sgt. First Class Joe Swoboda who, along with his service dog Lilly, helps Davis.

"Travis had no hope," Swoboda said. "Travis did not see a future for himself."

Swoboda served in the military for 18 years, doing three tours in Iraq including the initial invasion. After retiring due to an injury, he found himself in a similar position, struggling with PTSD.

"It drives you crazy," Swoboda said. "If someone walks in the room, you're on them. you're watching them."

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Through K9s For Warriors, he got his own dog, Lilly, and the two are inseparable.

"She can smell my anxiety raising and she will always lay between me and the person in front of me," Swoboda said. "Everything was different for me from there on out. I didn't feel alone and for the first time, I felt like I had hope."

The 30-minute documentary is designed to raise awareness as well as support veterans struggling with PTSD. The group K9s For Warriors is highlighted in the film as well.

Swoboda said he hopes it brings attention and funding to a critical issue.

"This film is going to be seen by so many veterans and it's going to save a lot of lives," he said.

Louisville-based liquor giant Brown-Forman introduced the documentary, the trailer for which you can watch below:

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