Friday, July 02, 2004

War Casualties

The Chicago Tribune reports on Sgt. Robert L. Sarra, and The Guardian on Tim Eysselinck, young men returning from service in Iraq:

Both served in Iraq. Both expressed skepticism about the war. Both had difficulties adjusting to life at home.

St. Sarra got into bar fights and received a month of Marine counseling for post-traumatic stress disorder. He was refused re-enrollment on the grounds that he could only show he met the Marine requirement to be fit for rigorous combat duty on foreign soil by agreeing to go back to Iraq. He refused.

He got a temporary job in a mailroom and filled out an application for the Secret Service. He speaks at peace rallies now. His mother still worries about him.

Tim Eysselinck did not fare as well. On April 23, he shot himself in the head. He leaves behind his parents, his brother, his wife, and a stepchild and a daughter.

How many more stories are there like this? And how many will the public ever hear?

~with gratitude to the Chicago Times and the Guardian for publishing these stories, and to the families for sharing them