Major General (Ret.) Deborah Ashenhurst, Director of the Ohio Department of Veteran Services, hits the ice to interact with members of the Ohio Warriors Sled Hockey Team. The Ohio Warriors Hockey Program’s mission is to organize and administer an ice hockey program that provides a recreational, therapeutic experience for disabled men and women who served in the U.S. Armed Forces.
Director Deborah Ashenhurst stated "It’s always an honor to see veterans who don’t let handicaps hold them back and don’t look at that as an excuse for not doing things. You just rise above it and figure out how you can still go do what you’ve gotta do, and participate as a team. Obviously, it’s all about the camaraderie and what we do for each other as veterans, and make it endearing to everyone, but also to help ourselves."
Major General (Retired) Deborah Ashenhurst retired from the U.S. Army and the National Guard in October 2015 after over 37 years of service. She served at all levels of command and in 2011 was appointed to the gubernatorial-level cabinet position of adjutant general of the State of Ohio, commanding the 17,000 service members of the Ohio National Guard, the Ohio Naval Militia and the Ohio Military Reserve. She served as adjutant general until January of 2015. Her career culminated in service as a special assistant to the vice chief, National Guard Bureau in Washington DC.
Brian Rosen, General Manager of the Ohio Warriors Sled Hockey stated "What it has provided them is that camaraderie and that teamwork that was just so critical when they were all active duty and then, all of a sudden, they’re no longer in the service and that’s just removed from their from their life. I think that’s probably been the biggest thing that this program has been able to offer them. Thank you to the Ohio Department of Veterans Services. We’ve had support from the department from day one and we appreciate the partnership and exposure you’ve helped us get."
Video of the visit with Director of the Ohio Department of Veterans Services Deborah Ashenhurst and Ohio Warriors Hockey Program can be viewed below.