LEAGUE CITY — Cyclist Tom L’Italien, riding for the ALIVE Program, stopped at Bay Harbour United Methodist Church, 3459 Deke Slayton Highway, on Sunday as part of his cross country tour designed to raise awareness of veterans suffering from mental health illness.
L’Italien, a member of the The Team Veteran Foundation, began his cross-country bicycling journey on July Fourth in San Diego, Calif., speaking with veterans and their families along the way about mental health issues they may be experiencing.
The Team Veteran Foundation’s sole purpose is to support veterans, particularly those who are experiencing distress and debilitating issues relating to their service.
Currently, an average of 22 veterans commit suicide a day, which is equivalent to one veteran every 65 minutes. Mental health issues such as Post-traumatic stress disorder affects about 30 percent of the men and women who have spent time in war zone experiences.
L’Italien’s mission is an important one and his efforts are supported by the Gulf Coast Center, mental health authority for Galveston and Brazoria counties, who is a member of the Military Veteran Peer Network.
L’Italien’s goal is to finish in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., by Aug. 1. His journey may be followed on The Team Veteran Foundation website at www.ttvfoundation.org.