DVR-6 is an action and advocacy team specialized in the recovery and aid of at-risk veterans in the backcountry. DVR-6 members are proficient in tracking, wilderness survival, first aid, PTSD and TBI issues, and various non-lethal doctrine and techniques. The driving force behind DVR-6 is the notion that veterans who become dysfunctional and dangerous merit a humane response. DVR-6 functions to save lives, not end them.
Additionally, DVR-6 advocates for alternative sentencing programs and separate detention facilities for veterans with an emphasis on rehabilitation and healing. DVR-6 believes that criminally prosecuted veterans have earned the right to serve their time in the company of other veterans in a setting mindful and reflective of their sacrifice. Additionally, these veterans should be given the chance to rehabilitate themselves through meaningful work, exposure to non-lethal doctrine and technique, and healthy coping strategies for dealing with their rage, frustration, and homicidal/suicidal impulses.
“While casting about for a way to feel useful to myself and to society, I realized that I had a lot of skills that weren’t being put to use. I was disturbed by all the veterans being shot to death by law enforcement, and shooting themselves. The story of Benjamin Colton Barnes, a homicidal veteran who fled into a snowbound wilderness in sneakers and a t-shirt and froze to death, hit me especially hard. I was going through a wilderness course for veterans in the Sawatch Mountains with Outward Bound, and I remember discussing his story in a snow camp at 11,000 feet. A few guys thought he got what he deserved, but I didn’t see things that way. Over the past year I realized that with something like DVR-6, the outcome could have been different. Barnes may have been reached before he froze to death. He may have been rescued. He may have survived in order to stand trial for his actions and receive treatment for his disturbed condition. But a traditional SWAT team wasn’t going to reach Barnes. They lacked the proper training and equipment for backcountry operations, and were not highly motivated in their pursuit. I think we owe it to veterans who go off the rails and flee into the wilderness to do more then just send in an ineffective SWAT team and a spotter plane. Soldiers are human beings. We have a moral obligation to our soldiers whom we have trained to kill, sent to the crucible of war, and who return unhinged and out of control. We need to do everything we can, hands down, to rescue and recover them. Traditional law enforcement and SWAT is not the right response for tracking down veterans fleeing into the wilderness. That’s what distressed veteran recovery teams should be allowed to handle.”
~ Alex Limkin, DVR-6