As both a former Marine and classically trained dancer, Roman Baca helps other veterans through dance workshops, aiming to mend their minds by moving their bodies.
The workshops aren't formal training or official therapy, But Baca believes that even simple gestures - a bend, a turn, a step - can help those who served ease the wars inside.
In this image, from a workshop at DANY Studios in Manhattan, Vietnam war veteran Everett Cox rests on the studio floor. "I don't think I've ever learned to relax. It's an alien concept to me," Cox said. "And yet I'm with these dancers who seem relaxed in every movement."
"I figured that if movement could help me, it could probably help some other people," said Roman Baca. "It's a way of expressing the real, the absurd, the imaginary, in a way that's tangible and physical. We're not just saying it. We're not just writing it on paper. We're actually moving these experiences and getting them away from us through movement."
"I wish I had a deep pocket so I could help him do more of it," said Vietnam veteran Everett Cox of Roman Baca's movement workshops.
"They really need to find some alternatives, alternatives to psychotherapy, alternatives to pills, alternatives to hospitalization, and they need to give people a chance to dance."
"I'm not somebody who easily leaves my comfort zone," said Kristen Rouse, an Afghanistan war veteran. "As Roman says, there's no wrong answer. And if I do something weird, that’s my thing that's weird. And it's mine."
"When they see me walking down the street, they probably don't assume that I was on my way here to dance," said Jeff Key, a towering former Marine who was first deployed to Iraq in 2003. "But they probably make a lot of other assumptions that are not right also."
"Soldiers are trained to kill," said Everett Cox. "The movements we are given are movements to kill."
Dance, he said, couldn't feel more different.
"There's a gentleness to it that can be a little unnerving. It's about contact with other people in a nonviolent way. With no intent to harm."
"These dancers come in here and with their bodies give," said Jeff Key. "For somebody who's given their life to dance, it's the most valuable thing they could offer to a veteran."
"One of the dancers was so tiny in my hands," said Jeff Key. "I just thought: This is an ominous amount of power for someone to give you, to put their bodies in your hand."