"It's just a feeling that comes over you," he said.
The way he copes is isolating himself in the basement of his house while fireworks are taking place.
Cindy Yamokoski, clinical psychologist, at the Louis Stokes Cleveland VA Medical Center said veterans reacting this way is not uncommon.
There's definitely a lot of anticipation, the loud noises, the fireworks, the bright flashes, not knowing when it's coming, so it is a pretty significant thing," she said.
Yamokoski said there usually is a surge of patients a few weeks leading up to today with veterans seeking help and coping strategies for their PTSD.
If you or a loved one may be triggered by today's festivities there is a hotline listed on the U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs website: 1-800-273-8255.