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This is My Brave – Rowdy Gifford

Rowdy Gifford passed away around 2:30pm on July 16, 2020 due to complications with COVID-19. Showering Love never wants to forget “The Man with 17 Names.” Here is more on the man Rowdy became throughout his life.

Rowdy was born in Kansas in August 9, 1952. After graduating high school, he joined the army and volunteered to go to Vietnam.

Rowdy Gifford passed away around 2:30pm on July 16, 2020 due to complications with COVID-19. Showering Love never wants to forget “The Man with 17 Names.” Here is more on the man Rowdy became throughout his life.

Rowdy was born in Kansas in August 9, 1952. He was raised on a farm and had three sisters and two brothers. After graduating high school, he joined the Army and volunteered to go to Vietnam. In a speech he delivered in 2018, he spoke openly about how PTSD affected him after the war. He stated that when he returned, “it was clear to everyone but me, that I was different. My [first] wife divorced me without ever seeing me. My mother asked me to leave and go back to the army.”

Rowdy was very open and vulnerable during his speech. Rowdy went on to share:

“I felt that I needed that adrenaline rush like I had back in Nam. I tried lots of drugs and alcohol, but that didn’t work. So, I did things that normal people don’t do, just to live on the edge. These things finally got me locked away. In that place was the first time I was told I was suffering from PTSD. This is also where I discovered tools that I needed to work with my PTSD. My main goal was to set productive goals and challenge myself to work toward them.”

And this is exactly what Rowdy did. He began focusing on goals and started to build a new life for himself. He became a power lifter, something he says was “good for both my body and my mind.” Soon enough, Rowdy and his special lady, Katrina, reunited and they were back together.

Rowdy won several power lifting competitions, became a Journeyman Plumber, then a Master Plumber. In 2000 he took up body building and won the competition in 2002, two months shy of his 50th birthday.

Rowdy retired from plumbing after 20 years and became an area manager who oversaw many job sites. He then became a Plumbing Inspector and a Plans Examiner.

To help him deal with his PTSD, in addition to riding his motorcycle, Rowdy Gifford began writing and it turned into a book about his life called, “The Man with 17 Names.” To evade the law in his younger years, Rowdy often changed his name.

Rowdy was then asked if he would help build a mobile shower bus for Showering Love, he agreed to do so.

Rowdy’s generosity, creativity and steadfastness has made a difference for over 10,000 who have used the bus since its conception. He was not only a gift to Showering Love, but he was a gift to everyone who met him. There are not many men like Rowdy and Showering Love is so blessed to have been able to call Rowdy a Board Member, its Master Plumber and most importantly, a friend.

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