Former Pittsburgh Steeler looks to help Valley veterans - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Former Pittsburgh Steeler looks to help Valley veterans

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STRUTHERS, Ohio -

A part-time Youngstown State University professor and former Pittsburgh Steeler reached out on Tuesday, in an effort to help our Valley's bravest. 

Jon Kolb is currently known as a kinesiology instructor at YSU in the Sports Science Department. 

But he's most widely known as the left tackle for the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1969 to 1981, who helped the Steelers win four Super Bowls.

Kolb spoke to the Struther AMVETS post on Tuesday, about a program that he is hoping will make a difference in the lives of Valley veterans. 

Kolb says there are 42,000 veterans' groups across the country, and though they mean well, some of them leave veterans needing more. 

"If somebody needs a wheelchair ramp they do a wheelchair ramp, if they need a roof fixed they'll do a roof if they need a car payment they'll help them with a car payment," said Kolb. "unfortunately the next month they're still physically in the same bind." 

Which is why Kolb is teaching the men and women of our Valley about his program titled "Adventures in Training with a Purpose" (ATP). 

The mission of ATP is to confront health and movement related issues for veterans without cost to the veteran.  

"What I see is with athletes we have one system where we're going to work with them twice a day," said Kolb. "But if you have the same injury and you're a 45-55-year-old veteran, if you get help at all, they're going to see you two, maybe three, times a week." 

ATP focuses on physical training that can combat mobility and balance issues. 

"We're not training them to be a football player. We're not training them to be any sport," explained Kolb. "We're training them so that their balance improves so that their flexibility improves so that in some cases, and maybe this doesn't sound pretty, they can get off of a toilet seat or a couch without their knees or their back hurting."

Kolb explained that the mission is one that has a personal meaning for him. 

"I got a scholarship to Oklahoma State University, my friends got scholarships to Vietnam," he said. "I don't know what that was like. But I know what they were like when they came back- the ones that came back. And some of them didn't."

For more information about ATP, or how one of our Valley's bravest can receive help, visit their website. 

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