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GRP 70- On for this week's podcast is retired Army veteran, Karolyn Smith. Karolyn was an MP (Military Police) who deployed to Iraq in 2004. She'd lost some of her closest friends in combat and survived several IED explosions while on security patrols. After getting wounded during one of these explosions she got out of the Army and became a security contractor for close to a decade. Karolyn struggled with PTSD, and TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury) for a long time and was unable to receive the help she needed from the VA. Michael Schiltz a well-known combat wounded Marine told her about a program at UCLA called Operation MEND.
Folks in Liberal Hollywood donate millions of dollars to this top tier program which take care of our warfighters with surgeries paid for, travel cost to California paid for, and continuing care post surgery all paid for and free of charge to the warfighter. Our second article has been published in the newly revamped article section on our website. Written by Gold Star Wife Alexandra McClintock. Alexandra's husband Matthew was killed in action last year in Afghanistan. Matthew is a Green Beret with multiple combat rotations and died protecting his wounded teammate. Alexandra details what it was like to learn of his death as well as some of the struggles she's faced. Here is a link to the article: http://www.globalrecon.net/articles/2017/3/14/hxi6jb8jd1j4m4g6ztc8h94udbp170
Below is an excerpt from the podcast:
Karolyn Smith: Iraq was pretty bad. Everything was a daily struggle. IED's, car bombs. September 7th, 2004 my Lieutenant and I were dismounted and a sniper shot him in the face and killed him. He died right next to me. Lieutenant Tim Price with the 127th MP's. He After that you become a different person. As a woman, i had to learn to compartmentalize. April 15th of 2005 a fuel tanker transport needed an MP convoy. A shaped charge was on the back of a light pole. It blew right threw the blast shield of my SAW. I knew that there were things that were wrong, but at that point in time, i just wanted to go back to Germany.
I'm trying to give one veteran something that they can use. We're all closely related because we all served. It's our oath to each other that we have to uphold. I'm open about how suicidal I was. There was nowhere for me to go. I thought how pissed off would LT be at me if I took that way out. His father, his mother, his brother would kill for him to just be in pain and have a bad day. You don't ever want to disappoint your buddies. You have to take one more step. That's your oath to everyone who didn't come home.
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Keep up with Karolyn Smith at http://www.3pawsup.com/
Introduction speech by General Colin Powell
Introduction music provided by Caspian. Song title is Gone in Bloom and Bough.