Dental Officer inspired by Wounded Warriors run

Dental Officer, Captain Nathalie Butler

Captain Nathalie Butler

Peter Mallett, Staff Writer — The gruelling physical challenge of traversing the length of Vancouver Island over eight consecutive days seems daunting. Captain (Capt) Nathalie Butler is up to the task. A Dental Officer from the Naden Dental Clinic, Capt Butler is one of two new fleet-footed volunteers on this year’s eight-member WWRBC.

“I knew I would be a good fit for the team, given my love of running and passion for giving back to the military community,” she said.

The team of five will embark on a relay-style run along the Trans-Canada Highway from Feb. 26-March 5 and will cover more than 600 km between Port Hardy and Victoria. WWRBC is now in its tenth year.

Capt Butler said the team’s mission is to raise public awareness of mental health and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), along with providing financial support for programs that benefit affected military members and first responders.

“PTSD and mental health issues affect everyone, so increasing awareness about their profound effects on military members and their loved ones will increase support and encourage others to seek help when they need it,” she said, adding that her work at the Base Dental Clinic gave her a fair degree of insight into the profound effects PTSD and operational stress injuries have on her patients.

Capt Butler took up distance running seven years ago, has competed in the local race circuit, and routinely runs 50-60 km per week. She is fully aware her next challenge is much more significant because it involves covering distances of up to 20 km per day for a string of eight consecutive days with little recovery time.

“I have been told by other participants this relay is truly an inspirational and challenging experience and there is no other running event like this anywhere,” she said.

Capt Butler is still determining what to expect regarding the physical demands of her task but is excited about the challenge.

Equally enthusiastic about this year’s relay is Matt Carlson, Support Team Runner and a civilian employee with the Base Commander’s Office, who joined the team in 2018.

“Just seeing the direct positive impact Wounded Warriors has had in my community keeps me coming back to the team each year,” Carlson said.

Carlson and Capt Butler continue raising funds and awareness about the run. Runners not directly participating can help fundraise and promote WWRBC by registering for their National Virtual Run. Using the running app Strava, runners can run, walk, ski or paddle to help raise money and awareness. Fundraising is ongoing, and donations to fundraising campaigns of individual runners can be made at the  these websites: and

Wounded Warriors Run BC Team:

  • Captain (Capt) Nathalie Butler, runner;
  • Capt Jacqueline Zweng, Race director;
  • Master Sailor Amver Cinco of the Naval Personnel Training Group (NPTG), runner;
  • Matt Carlson, a civilian employee with the Base Commander’s Office and Support
    Team Runner;
  • Chief Petty Officer Second Class John Penner, a Divisional Commander of Naval Fleet School (Pacific) and the team’s photographer.

Dental Officer, Wounded Warriors Run

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