The Daily News of Jacksonville, N.C. reports that two Medal of Honor recipients talked to Marines at Camp Lejeune about suicide. Retired Maj. Gen. James Livingston and retired Army Maj. Drew Dix attempted to reduce the stigma attached to PTS and seeking help;
“The strength of the Marine Corps is in the camaraderie of the Corps,” Livingston said. “We are the most unique brotherhood in the world; there’s no bigger brotherhood — no bigger fraternity — than the U.S. Marine Corps.”
Dix took a different approach, reminding the Marines of the resources available to them on base and telling them to take advantage of the programs designed to help.
“You have the responsibility for your actions completely,” Dix said. “You’ve got so many programs in front of you, you’ve just got to take advantage of them.”
Both Livingston and Dix commended the troops for their actions in Iraq and Afghanistan, saying some of the battles, especially the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003, are on par with the most historic battles of World War II and Vietnam.
“You are the absolute best there is in the world,” Livingston said. “You aren’t going to let your buddies down, and you aren’t going to let the country down.”
Like I’ve said a million times on this blog, the key to breaking this suicide thing is old soldiers talking to the younger soldiers. We’re the ones who’ve survived our own demons and we need to tell the younger folks how we did it.