Founded in July of 2015, the Maine Veterans Project (MVP) is dedicated to serving Maine veterans in a direct effort to reduce veteran suicide. Our great state ranks amongst the highest regarding the ratio of veterans in the country and MVP is both honored and proud to serve such a fine demographic of heroes.
MVP is constantly innovating the meet the needs of Maine veterans. Through existing programs and forging new methodologies, MVP is at the forefront of Maine veteran suicide prevention with integrity and dedication.
The Maine Veterans Project has a unique story stemming from a single, successful event on October 18, 2015.
Founder Doc Goodwin joined the military in 2002, leaving his hometown in Downeast Maine, never imagining he might return as a resident. After seven years of honorable service, Doc moved to California where he held several roles such as a reality TV star, small business consultant and frequent trips to austere places as a contract security director. Other than sporadic, short trips, Doc hadn’t been to Maine for a “good Maine Summer” in 13 years, so that’s what he decided to do in 2015. On July 27th, Doc touched town in Bangor to spend a month with his family in Downeast Maine to gorge on lobster and pristine wilderness bordering an endless coastline.
While home, Doc read an article about Army Major Justin Fitch, an individual battling terminal stage IV colon cancer and given months to live. The catch is Justin’s final mission, which is to fight the veteran suicide epidemic. He didn’t want to travel, he didn’t want selfish wants fulfilled like any of us would, he wanted to uphold his oath and save the lives of his brothers and sisters. Doc was inspired by his courage and ashamed that he was unaware of the suicide epidemic among veteran – more than 20 veterans take their lives every single day.
Moved by Justin’s story, Doc decided to do what he could to contribute to Major Fitch’s cause. Doc organized an ATV ride to raise money to help veterans. Expecting a handful of people to pull together and raise a few hundred dollars at best, the result far exceeded expectations. In 28 days from conception to execution, this small community managed to bring out 330 riders on over 200 machines to raise over $4,200.
This rewarding experience inspired Doc to create the Maine Veterans Project.
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