As part of our ongoing coverage of veterans’ disability benefits, we’ve been profiling Kyle Dubay, a 28-year-old former combat medic who served three tours in Iraq.
He was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder, and tried all the usual things to treat his PTSD – medication and talk therapy helped him some – but found real solace in mixed martial arts, a form of combat fighting that’s a cross between kickboxing and wrestling.
I met up with Dubay and a few of his teammates at a fight night at their gym in Mesa, Ariz., and interviewed them for a radio story that ran on NPR’s Morning Edition.
Dubay’s teammate (and fellow combat veteran) Justin Hayes sums up the fighting this way:
“Hanging out with friends, beating the crap out of each other; there’s nothing more fun than that.
“You got drama at home. You got school. You got homework. But when you’re on the mat, nothing matters.”
You can listen to the piece here.