Many eagerly await Independence Day next week, but the holiday on which the U.S. celebrates its founding has a much different connotation for some.

Courtesy photo

Courtesy photo

Combat veterans who suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) often struggle during holidays that involve fireworks displays.

A veteran’s PTSD can be triggered by both big pyrotechnics and little firecrackers, according to

The sound of the explosions can cause a veteran to become combative or to have flashbacks.

The “Explosion of Kindness” campaign was created to raise awareness of the potentially detrimental effects of fireworks on veterans and others who might be afflicted with PTSD.

“An estimated 7 percent to 20 percent of the more than 2.5 million veterans and troops who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan are believed to have developed PTSD,” according to

This same group offers free signs to veterans that can be placed in front yards. The signs state that a veteran lives at the residence and requests that people be respectful of the individual’s reaction to fireworks. At least one sign has been sent to Arkansas City

The Military with PTSD website is requesting financial assistance to keep the cost of the signs down for veterans who request them.

Donations can be made in the following increments:

  • $10 — will provide a free sign to two veterans;
  • $25 — will provide a free sign to six veterans;
  • $50 — will provide a free sign to 12 veterans.

Donations can be made by visiting