Monday, October 1, 2012

"We send these kids off to war -- we make them see things people otherwise wouldn't have to see. Then we expect them to come back and behave like the rest of us. It's breaking my heart." -Christopher Griffin

"In today's community of Iraq and Afghanistan war veterans, one in five suffer from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or major depression. Brian Scott Ostrom is one of them. After serving four years as a reconnaissance marine and deploying twice to Iraq, Scott, now 27, returned home to the U.S. with a severe case of PTSD. "The most important part of my life already happened. The most devastating. The chance to come home in a box. Nothing is ever going to compare to what I've done, so I'm struggling to be at peace with that," Scott said. He attributes his PTSD to his second deployment to Iraq, where he served seven months in Fallujah with the 2nd Reconnaissance Battalion. "It was the most brutal time of my life," he said. "I didn't realize it because I was living it. It was a part of me." Since his discharge, Scott has struggled with daily life, from finding and keeping employment to maintaining healthy relationships. But most of all, he's struggled to overcome his brutal and haunting memories of Iraq. Nearly five years later, Scott remains conflicted by the war. Though he is proud of his service and cares greatly for his fellow Marines, he still carries guilt for things he did and didn't do fighting a war he no longer believes in." -Craig F. Walker, Pulitzer Prize winner

The thing that really gets me when I see these photos is the emotion. The fact that all the emotion you see in Brian's face is actually what he's feeling and what he's going through, especially the fourth photo. Most of the time when looking at emotional photography it's evident that the emotions were staged, but with these pictures, and the back story, I don't know, it just really got to me.

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