Parrots and military veterans bond and heal each other.
Abused and abandoned parrots are fairly common in the United States. People purchase them for pets without understanding the challenges: They are large, noisy, need plenty of space to fly and forage, want to be with other parrots, and can live more than 50 years. When Lindner fell in love with an abused Moluccan cockatoo she named Sammy, she started on a journey that changed her life. After Sammy, she adopted Mango, another abused cockatoo. At the time, the author was working as a clinical psychologist and also began helping homeless veterans suffering from PTSD. When the veterans were introduced to the parrots and began speaking to them when no one was watching, Lindner had an epiphany. She realized the parrots had fewer emotional problems around the vets, and the men and women with PTSD were much calmer and more capable of handling their stress. So the author decided to start a parrot sanctuary where vets could work with and care for the birds. After much work and many years, Serenity Park was born, built on the grounds of the LA Veterans Administration Healthcare Center. Lindner pleasingly blends the stories of several out-of-luck veterans with those of the abused birds as well as facts and information about the care and maintenance of parrots. She also shares the story of her love for one of the men she helped who has worked with Lindner at Serenity Park for many years. Her story of dedication to the birds she loves and to the men and women she has helped is encouraging and uplifting. Bird lovers, in particular, will enjoy the descriptions of the parrots she saves, each with his or her own unique personality.
A powerful story of dedicated service to abandoned birds and veterans and how bringing them together helped save them all.