Skip to Content

Army Veteran Struggling With PTSD Finds Comfort In Horses & Mules

Army Veteran Struggling With PTSD Finds Comfort In Horses & Mules

After returning home from Afghanistan, Army Veteran Ray Knell began struggling with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

After struggling to find a purpose in life Knell set out on a 1,000-mile ride along the Continental Divide, using horses and the wilderness to heal.

Knell served in the Army for 11 years in the 10th Special Forces Group. At one point, he went through a period of 8-9 months that he didn’t want to leave the house at all. He struggled not only with PTSD, but also anxiety.

This is when he then decided to take a riding trip with Horses and Heroes that changed his life.

The trip went through the mountains and was designated for combat veterans.

Army veteran riding a horse in the mountains

A Life-Changing Experience

After the life-changing experience, Knell returned to the saddle for another epic ride. With his trusty Mustang Sally and his two mules, Top Gun and Magic, he set out on an incredible 1,000-mile-long ride from Colorado to Montana.

For his journey through the beautiful Yellowstone National Park, he was joined by filmmaker Ben Masters.

Also Read: Cowboy Gets Dying Wish to Say Goodbye to His Beloved Horse

Masters had recently lost a friend, who was a veteran, to suicide. As this was weighing down on him, he too was also seeking healing.

Knell and Masters experience the phenomenal healing powers that horses and nature provide. They enjoy the serenity and peacefulness that America’s first National Park has to offer.

During their expedition, they encounter bison up close, along with seeing other wildlife. They go trout fishing and even enjoy a relaxing coffee while laying with the mules.

Army veteran laying down with a horse

Knell shares how the experience has given him a new outlook on life. Horses gave him hope in a time when he needed it the most.

Upon reaching his destination in Montana, Knell generously donated his horses and tack to Horses and Heroes. He hopes to help other Army Veterans struggling to find peace and meaning just as he has with horses.

Watch the incredible video of Knell and Masters riding through Yellowstone down below.

Also read: