MESERVEY, Iowa -- An Army veteran battling Post Traumatic Stress Disorder hopes his art acts as a symbol of support for the Clinton Fire Department.
Anthony Martin is a 14 year veteran of the US Army. However, all his years in service did not come easy.
"I got 8 vertebrae fused, both hips replaced, 3 replaced in my neck... what am I supposed to do," Martin said.
But those were only the injuries to his body. Everyday, he still battles post traumatic stress disorder.
"Me and my wife have a cue," Martin said. "It's like when my adrenaline gets going and my hands get tense and I even start sweating and everything and she just says 'Go to the shop. Just work',"
That work? Chainsaw carving. And it has become his form of therapeutic counseling.
"Biggest issue I have with the PTSD is I gotta go-go-go," Martin said. "(Carving) makes me slooow down... go through it and it's the same thing as my treatment."
Right now, Anthony is using his skill to work on something special -- a tribute to fellow servicemen at the Clinton Fire Department.
"It's about a 5 foot carving," Martin said. "Heavy -- roughly 200 lbs."
In light of last month's fatal fire, the sculpture is of firefighter Adam Cain laying down Lieutenant Eric Hosette's uniform one last time. It is detailed with Lt. Hosette's End of Watch Call number and the Clinton Fire Department logo. A personal touch from an Army veteran more than 200 miles from Clinton.
"I'm actually from DeWitt, Iowa," Martin said. "I want to represent where I'm from and help out and honestly this is just a great opportunity."
An opportunity for firefighters and veterans to come together -- regardless of the uniform.
"They're no different than a US veteran that goes overseas," Martin. "The only difference is that they don't leave the country. They're in the same fight, they suffer the same PTSD treatments. It's no different."
In a barn that reminds him of his military experiences, he is creating a tribute from the heart... to another band of brothers.
"I've lost battle buddies. I've seen them fall. I want them to know... you can get through it," Martin said. "Know that the community, the veterans, local PD everyone, we're all there for them. Not just the family, but the guys who wear the uniforms."
Finding a sense of peace -- for him and Clinton firefighters -- now preserved in art.
Anthony Martin is also the founder of Logs4Heroes. He plans to open up his personal workshop to mentor others suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.