Letter: Tribute to Aspen war hero Casey Owens
October 24, 2014
Aspen lost one of its own, a true American war hero, Casey Owens. He was only 32 years old when he took his own life. I only got to know him for the past three months as a patient, but during that short time, I really was tremendously impressed with his determination, positive attitude and personality. Casey carried a heavy burden from his war injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder. No young man or woman should have to do so. I am asking the Aspen community to join with me in joining the Wounded Warriors Project and pledging a small amount of your money in Casey's honor.
Also, I am joining with Pitkin County Sheriff Joe DiSalvo in asking Aspen Valley Hospital and its board members to hire a staff psychiatrist and devote at least one room at the hospital for safe treatment. Aspen Valley Hospital should not wait until Phase 3 to have a treatment room. Aspen is in great need of this; we are losing too many young people to needless suicide. I think our Aspen City Council should step in and take the leadership role providing funding for this to happen rather than spending untold sums of money on resodding its snow-polo field.
Tonight, tell your loved ones and friends that you love them, and give them a big hug. Casey would be very happy.
Dr. Robert Jensen