A Good and Caring Person
Combat sears the mind and body in ways we can only begin to understand. Everyone comes home from war changed. Tragically, many troops have come home from Iraq and Afghanistan suffering from chronic combat stress, and many have gone on to develop post-traumatic stress disorder.
Army Spec. Joe Dwyer was one of those soldiers. He went to war as a combat medic with the 3rd Infantry Division, serving with 3rd Squadron, 7th Cavalry, during its headlong rush to Baghdad in 2003. Immortalized by a Military Times photograph depicting him carrying a young Iraqi child, he went on to see a great deal of suffering on all sides during his tour, and he brought many ghosts home with him.
Dwyer tried mightily to beat these demons, but eventually succumbed to the struggle. On June 28, he died from the effects of various chemicals he ingested to kill himself. His wife, from whom he'd been estranged for a year, said it best: "He was a very good and caring person. He was just never the same when he came back, because of all the things he saw. He tried to seek treatment, but it didn't work."
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