In 2008-2009, I was assigned to the 349th Combat Support Hospital serving at Forward Operating Base Salerno located in eastern Afghanistan, close to the Pakistan border. We cared for the casualties of the conflict, including U.S. soldiers, Afghan national soldiers and police, Afghan local civilians including women and children, as well as enemy combatants.
This May, children all across the country will be doing something special for their mothers. For the more than 1700 young wounded warriors who also happen to be amputees, or the thousands more who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder or traumatic brain injuries, honoring their moms in such a traditional way often can be problematic.
Before we moved out west, we were lifelong New Yorkers. Like Gary, 9/11 was a turning point in our lives. Billy was working in Manhattan at the time. We lost several friends and knew countless others that were impacted.