Veteran Tim Hammer gets removed from the hyperbaric chamber by nurse Laura Mastrony in Delray Beach. JIM RASSOL

The 22 Project is a nonprofit organization that supports war veterans who have a TBI and are at risk for suicide and/or major depression. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is available to these veterans through The 22 Project at no cost.

Robert Polumbo has been with the nonprofit organization for two years. Witnessing each veteran’s positive transformation has been very rewarding for him. The same goes for Erica Cruz, a founder of The 22 Project. She sees the transformation HBOT brings daily to these veterans and it makes her heart so happy to know their organization is making a difference. She states –

“It’s a rich, full thing to see each treatment. When you see them before they’re like a wounded person not making any eye contact or talking,” said Erica. “They’re terrified they don’t even want to be seen in public. Then you see them four weeks later and they’re laughing and having a great time with people.”

Earlier this month, U.S. Rep. Scott Franklin, was introduced to The 22 Project and HBOT at a fundraiser. The topic of suicide is near to Franklin – a Navy veteran himself – who has in the past lost three veteran friends to suicide. “Obviously suicide is a major issue for the military,” Franklin said. “It’s a big topic of conversation.”