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Reshaping the World - Soaring Above Adversity
854 4 2017-10-5
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VigilanteDrones
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    Technology has a beautiful and amazing power.  With a single advancement, technology can change both the world as we know it and empower the individual.  DJI is a trailblazer in the field of drone technology and as such has forged a path for people with adversities to break free and touch the world.

        As a veteran with numerous tours of war I am one of the over 540K men and women suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the United States alone.  Everyone’s symptoms are different.  I personally have a great deal of difficulty adjusting to crowds.  I am constantly on guard and the more I am around people the more I feel I am unsafe.  Even with medication and therapy I spend most of my time at home, a prisoner of PTSD.

                A little less than a year ago I found hope in the form of a DJI Phantom 3 Standard and a Phantom 4 Pro drone.  At the time I was working for a small construction company.  Though the pay great I was miserable and felt my PTSD was not getting any better.  My symptoms were in fact getting worse.  As my misery grew a natural disaster destroyed my home in Southern California and my wife became very sick.  Eventually we found that she had a rare genetic disease called Ehlers-Danlos syndrome (EDS).  I had no choice but to quit my job and focus on my family’s issues.

        Our health declined and we learned our house was unrepairable due to the amount of water damage it suffered.  Flood waters had damaged too much of the house for it to be saved.  We had faith that our situation would improve but it seemed the negative far outweighed the positive.  Homeless and sick we decided to leave southern California and move to Montana.  

Even in the midst of our uncertain situation there was a ray of hope.  For the first time I was able to decide on a new path in life.  With the blessing of my amazing wife I searched deep in my heart for what I wanted to do.  I soon became convinced I wanted to start my own drone service company.

        After much research I found that DJI produced drones of an unmatched quality at a very affordable price.  Having no real experience with flying drones I found both Phantoms easy to maneuver.  With only a little practice I was able to operate the basic functions without difficulty.  On the Phantom 4 Pro I made use of the obstacle avoidance features.  A great tool for someone new to drones like myself.  The 20 mega-pixel camera produced stunning imagery.  Looking through the DJI Go 4 app I felt as if I were flying.

        The perspective given through the app allows me to take a momentary pause away from my PTSD.  In most cases I have gotten my batteries to last around 25 minutes.  In my mind that is a 25 minute pause from what haunts me after years of combat.  The relief is priceless.
Something about the flying has been very therapeutic for my PTSD.  I am feeling better in crowds and spend many days hiking in the mountains with my drone.  I feel empowered to leave my house now.  Running my own drone business has also given me time to take care of my wife as we sort through EDS.

        My excitement about drones led me to take several online and in-person classes with DARTdrones.  I began the legal formation of my company and acquired my Part 107 sUAS certification.  I was open for business and starting taking gigs.  My company is Vigilante Drones at www.vigilantedrones.com

        The freedom I have as a commercial drone pilot (flying exclusively DJI products) is life-changing.  My work has taken me all over the country.  I am looking forward to traveling internationally soon as well.  I am feeling very confident about the imagery I am capturing.  I love the control the DJI Go 4 app allows the pilot to have over the camera while in flight.  Having no training in photography I even entered a few on my photos into the local county fair and took 4 first place awards.

        Without my DJI drones I do not believe my family and I would be doing as well as we are.  It is hard to imagine that we are as happy and blessed as each day finds us.  Less than a year ago we lost our house and were plagued by poor health.  Now we live on a farm in Montana and are seeing hope in our recoveries.
I am very grateful to DJI for the freedom they have given my family and I.  I am looking forward to growing my fleet of DJI products and soaring higher above our adversities.  I hope all of you can do the same.
For more information on PTSD please visit the Veterans Affairs website at www.ptsd.va.gov
For more information on EDS please visit the Ehlers-Danlos society at www.ehlers-danlos.com


2017-10-5
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VigilanteDrones
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Flight distance : 4475010 ft
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2017-10-5
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VigilanteDrones
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Flight distance : 4475010 ft
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RE: Reshaping the World - Soaring Above Adversity - Pictures

Here are the pictures.  Sorry they were not attached before.  I'm new to the format of the forum.  
DJI_0002.jpg
DJI_0019.jpg
DJI_00021.jpg
DJI_0042.jpg
DJI_00351.jpg
2017-10-10
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Ready Set Drone
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Awesome story and congratulations on finishing in the DJI #reshapingtheworld contest so well! I'm very happy to hear that you have restarted in Montana and wish you the best with your business!
2017-10-19
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VigilanteDrones
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Ready Set Drone Posted at 2017-10-19 03:06
Awesome story and congratulations on finishing in the DJI #reshapingtheworld contest so well! I'm very happy to hear that you have restarted in Montana and wish you the best with your business!

Thank you for the kind comments and congrats for finishing as well as you did too.  It looks like your travels were full of family and fun this summer.  Utah and New York both looked very scenic and full of great memories.  I hope you continue to have many more and keep flying!
2017-10-19
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