Boston Marathon wounds raise anxiety for Iraq, Afghanistan war veterans
Long Island Newsday
April 21, 2013
By MARTIN C. EVANS
The horrific wounds on the legs of some Boston Marathon spectators were all too similar to those witnessed and experienced by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Timothy Strobel of Shirley, a former Army medic, who rushed to aid the wounded when a Baghdad suicide bomber injured 38 Iraqi civilians at a crowded gas station in 2007, had to turn away from television images streaming out of Boston.
Christopher Levi of Holbrook, a former soldier with the 10th Mountain Division, who during a 2008 roadside bombing in Iraq lost both legs, felt vulnerable as he heard accounts of amputations in Boston.
They are among veterans who said the images from the Boston bombings, which killed three and wounded more than 170, inflamed their own anxieties about their experiences in war.
"It brought me right back there," said Strobel, 30, who served during one of the bloodiest periods of the Iraq War, and who now counsels veterans coping with war-related anxieties. "I had to turn the television off."
Strobel is a program coordinator for the Suffolk County-based PFC Joseph Dwyer Veterans PTSD Peer-to-Peer Program, which works with veterans who have post-traumatic stress disorder. After the group's Facebook page urged veterans who were experiencing anxieties related to the Boston bombings to contact the program, more than a half dozen replied.
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Thursday, April 25, 2013
Boston Marathon wounds raise anxiety for war veterans
It is not just the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans, but all veterans. Bombs have been planted in the earth for generations. For the OEF and OIF veterans, it is pretty raw emotionally. WWII, Korea, Vietnam and Gulf War veterans have been thru September 11th so they saw their anxiety level rise back then. This is yet one more reminder of lives on the line doing what this country asked of them. All of them need help right now.