Marine veteran ending state Senate campaign to seek PTSD treatment

Nathan Fletcher, a former Marine and Afghanistan war veteran, announced on Sunday that he planned to end his bid for state Senate in California to seek treatment for post traumatic stress, citing trauma from his time in combat.

“For many years, I’ve been suffering from devastating post traumatic stress associated with combat piled on top of intense childhood trauma that’s been exacerbated by alcohol abuse,” Fletcher, who currently serves on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors, said on Twitter.

“With the recommendation of my therapist and the insistence of my wife, this week I will be checking into an extended inpatient treatment center for post traumatic stress, trauma and alcohol abuse.”

Fletcher, a former tech executive and state assemblyman, said that while receiving treatment, he would need to “focus on my health and my family and do not have the energy to simultaneously pursue a campaign for the State Senate.”

Fletcher revealed that while he has projected calm on the outside, “internally, I have been waging a struggle that only those closest to me have seen; the detrimental impact on my relationships, mood, and inability to sleep.”

Fletcher piled up a number of high-profile endorsements early on in his campaign, including from San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria and four members of U.S. Congress.

Fletcher’s move to drop his state Senate bid in California comes as a newly intensified focus on the mental health of elected officials has emerged in recent months.

The decision by Sen. John Fetterman (D-Pa.) earlier this year to check himself into a hospital to receive treatment for depression put a national spotlight on the issue.

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