Defense Base Act Compensation Blog

The Modern Day DBA Casualty

Archive for the ‘Melt Down’ Category

Untreated PTSD Endangers Families and Others-Donald Henson a result of AIG’s Deadly Mistreatment of Injured Contractors

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on October 19, 2012

Accused Saco gunman had raised red flags

The man’s wife had gotten a protection order and police saw disturbing signs before Tuesday’s standoff.

Perhaps AIG and their claims adjusters, and their  attorneys should be arrested for this

Portland Press Herald

BIDDEFORD — The wife of a Saco man accused of shooting at her and her mother and burning a house down Tuesday had secured a protection-from-abuse order against him on Monday.

Donald A. Henson, 47, was arrested Tuesday night after a three-hour standoff with police at his mother-in-law’s house at 645 Goodwin Mills Road in Dayton. He is charged with aggravated attempted murder, arson and terrorizing.

Police say he shot at his wife and mother-in-law and set two houses and a pickup truck on fire.

Henson made his initial court appearance Wednesday in Biddeford District Court. Justice Paul Fritzsche did not ask him to enter a plea. Henson was being held in the York County Jail on $250,000 cash bail.

Prosecutors had requested $100,000 bail. Fritzsche said he raised it because of Henson’s “incredibly dangerous behavior.”

Henson did not speak during his arraignment. B.J. Broder, the lawyer representing him, said Henson has post-traumatic stress disorder and is disabled.

Broder said Henson was injured in Iraq in 2009 while working as a civilian contractor and it appears that he doesn’t understand his rights because of his mental state.

In an email sent Tuesday morning to Biddeford District Court, a Saco Police Department representative said officers were concerned about Henson’s potential for “homicidal/suicidal” actions

Please read the entire story here

Posted in AIG and CNA, Civilian Contractors, Contractor Casualties and Missing, Defense Base Act, Defense Base Act Attorneys, Defense Base Act Insurance, Delay, Deny, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Hope that I die, Injured Contractors, Iraq, Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Will the Exclusive Remedy continue to condone murder or will G4S/ArmorGroup finally be held responsible for the murders of Paul McGuigan and Darren Hoare?????

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on September 30, 2012

WARNINGS ABOUT KILLER OF SCOT WENT UNHEEDED  October 1, 2012

ArmorGroup put the gun in his hand knowing that he was troubled

CONTROVERSIAL security firm G4S ignored warnings not to employ an armed guard in Iraq who went on to murder two of his colleagues, it has been claimed.

Danny Fitzsimons was sentenced to at least 20 years in an Iraqi prison last year for killing Scot Paul McGuigan and Australian Darren Hoare in Baghdad in 2009.The parents of Paul McGuigan, 37, have now called for G4S ArmorGroup to face criminal charges for failing to heed the warnings and sending Fitzsimons to Iraq.Now a new BBC Scotland documentary has revealed that G4S was warned not to employ Fitzsimons, who was suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and had been fired by a previous security contractor for punching a client.It emerged that a whistleblower sent two e-mails to the London-based company, which operates as Armorgroup in Iraq, expressing concerns that Fitzsimons’ unstable behaviour made him unsuitable to be handling weapons in a war zone.
The first e-mail, revealed in tonight’s BBC Scotland Investigates: Britain’s Private War programme, reads: “I am alarmed that he will shortly be allowed to handle a weapon and be exposed to members of the public. I am speaking out because I feel that people should not be put at risk.”And in a second e-mail, sent as 32-year-old Fitzsimons was about to start work in Baghdad, the whistleblower adds:“Having made you aware of the issues regarding the violent criminal Danny Fitzsimons, it has been noted that you have not taken my advice and still choose to employ him in a position of trust.
“I have told you that he remains a threat and you have done nothing.”Paul McGuigan’s mother, Corinne Boyd-Russell, from Innerleithen, in Peebleshire, said: “Fitzsimons fired the bullets. But the gun was put in his hand by G4S ArmorGroup.“I want G4S to be charged with corporate manslaughter and be held accountable for what they did.”The parents of Fitzsimons were also shocked to hear about the existence of the e-mails.Mother Liz Fitzsimons, from Manchester, said: “The people who we feel are responsible, who we hold responsible for putting that gun in Danny’s hand, are without a shadow of a doubt G4S.”The news comes just months after the UK Government was forced to call in 1,200 troops to police the Olympic Games venues after G4S failed to provide enough staff.

The firm recently won a £20million contract to manage the electronic tagging of Scottish offenders.

A spokesman for G4S said: “Although there was evidence that Mr Fitzsimons falsified and apparently withheld material information during the recruitment process, his screening was not completed in line with the company’s procedures.

“Our screening processes should have been better implemented in this situation, but it is a matter of speculation what, if any, role this may have played in the incident.”

Posted in Armorgroup, Civilian Contractors, Contractor Casualties and Missing, Defense Base Act, Defense Base Act Insurance, Defense Base Act Law and Procedure, Department of Labor, Exclusive Remedy, Follow the Money, G4S, Hope that I die, Iraq, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Ronco Consulting, State Department, UK Contractor killed, Wackenut | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Army Wants PTSD Clinicians to Stop Screening for Fakers: Chances are they are probably ailing

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on August 3, 2012

While even the military realizes the dangers of delaying and denying PTSD Diagnoses and Treatment

The Defense Base Act Insurance Companies and their Overly Zealous Defense continue to brutally delay and deny diagnoses and treatment of PTSD to injured war zone contractors, most having served their country in the military.

In fact they are still allowed to force PTSD patients to undergo psychological  interrogation by the infamous Dr John Dorland Griffith who has been discredited over and over again, and falsely accused injured war zone contractors of malingering.  Many PTSD claims were denied based on his paid in cash testimony.

In case after case treatable PTSD becomes a chronic lifelong condition, destroying lives, shredding families.

Ultimately costing taxpayers and our society as a whole much more in the long run but provide more profits for the insurer and ever more fees for attorneys on both side of this boondoggle.

The Department of Labor presented policy five years requiring PTSD Claims to be expedited but the policy was never implemented.

Wired’s Danger Room

In a big reversal, the Army has issued a stern new set of guidelines to doctors tasked with diagnosing post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among returning soldiers. Stop spending so much time trying to spot patients who are faking symptoms, the new guidelines instruct. Chances are, they’re actually ailing.

The 17-page document has yet to be made public but was described in some detail by the Seattle Times. In it, the Army Surgeon General’s Office specifically points out — and discredits — a handful of screening tests for PTSD that are widely used by military clinicians to diagnose a condition estimated to afflict at least 200,000 Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.

The Army Surgeon General finds great fault with a dense personality test popular with clinicians that ostensibly weeds out “malingerers,” as PTSD fakers are known.

But the results of what’s known as the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Test are flawed, according to the report. PTSD sufferers often exhibit anxiety, insomnia, flashbacks and depression — all of which, some doctors believe, can be discounted under the test. The test devotes a large swath of questions to catching apparent exaggerations of symptom severity, seemingly inconsistent answers, or reported symptoms that don’t mesh with the typical signs associated with an illness.

“The report rejects the view that a patient’s response to hundreds of written test questions can determine if a soldier is faking symptoms,” the Seattle Times summarized. Where PTSD is concerned, that’s especially true. The condition is accompanied by symptoms that can differ markedly between patients: Some are hyperactive, others are lethargic; some exhibit frenetic rage while others are simply sullen and depressed.

“And,” the Times continued, “[the report] declares that poor test results ‘does not equate to malingering.’”

Those tests were the standard of care at Madigan Army Medical Center — which is a big deal. Located in Tacoma, Washington, Madigan isn’t just one of the military’s largest medical installations. It’s home to a forensic psychiatry team tasked with deciding whether soldiers diagnosed with PTSD were sick enough to qualify for medical retirement. In March, the Army launched an investigation of the Madigan team after Madigan’s screening procedures allegedly reversed 300 of the PTSD diagnoses among soldiers being evaluated.

The reversals resulted in some soldiers being diagnosed with “personality disorders” and others left with no diagnosis at all. Madigan allegedly used the tests to save money by limiting the number of patients who’d qualify for retirement. “

Posted in ACE, AIG and CNA, AWOL Medical Records, Chartis, Civilian Contractors, Defense Base Act, Defense Base Act Attorneys, Defense Base Act Insurance, Defense Base Act Law and Procedure, Defense Base Act Lawyers, Defense Medical Examinations, Delay, Deny, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Hope that I die, KBR, LHWCA Longshore Harbor Workers Compesnation Act, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Suicide, Veterans, Veterans Affairs | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Untreated PTSD puts family at risk

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on August 3, 2012

A presentence investigation found Ali has untreated mental illness, defense attorney Blair Nelson said. He said Ali had a good job as a civilian contractor for the military, but it ended when he developed post-traumatic stress disorder, depression and anxiety.

Moorhead man gets 27 months for trying to run over wife, daughter

Hisham Fazil Ali says he suffers from PTSD from time as contractor in the Middle East

A Moorhead man convicted of trying to run over his wife and daughter was sentenced to 27 months in prison Thursday, despite his tearful statements that he needs to care for his family and suffers from mental issues as a result of his civilian work in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Posted in Afghanistan, Civilian Contractors, Defense Base Act, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Iraq, Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

When do CNA’s Deadly Paper Games become outright lies to Department of Labor?

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on July 19, 2012

How about now DOL ????

Documents showed that CNA reported the highest profits margins, taking in nearly 50 percent more in premiums than it paid out in benefits.

CNA’s Deadly Paper Games

After having defaulted on an Order to provide medical to an Injured War Zone Contractor for over 15 months, after denying for six years prior, CNA provides a computer printout to the Department of Labor Claims Examiner who was charged with  investigating this Default.

Not to give undue credit here, the Claims Examiner was trying to remedy the default per her job description, not confirm that they were in default.

Here is a copy and paste of the body of the correspondence, the full document has been forwarded to the DoL IG for investigation along with computer printout they attached.

Dear Mr Lee

Pursuant to Claims Examiners Kristina Hall’s request of January 3, 2012 and as a supplement to our response dated January 9, 2012, please find enclosed a payment printout showing payments issued by CNA International to medical providers regarding Mr. Clark.  The enclosed printout also shows the recent reimbursement payment of $1,270.34.

Defendents will continue to adjust medical invoices when and as received with accompanying medical reports.
Sounds just like they are paying for Injured War Zone Contractors  Medical over the years.  The reimbursement was for Out of Pocket presented in 2009 and clearly 15 months post order.

Problem here is that these payments were not for provided medical.

One is for a final report, not diagnoses or treatment, requested by CNA prior to hearing , that really made the Doctor mad over wasting his precious time, and the rest are for Defense Medical Examination’s.  Pages 3 and 4 were with held  but we suspect they include the parade of DME’s that were demanded.

The very abusive DME’s that were required repeatedly and outside of his geographic area.  The ones that ALJ Paul C Johnson assisted CNA with.

Not only did CNA represent these DME’s as having provided medical care for this Injured War Zone Contractor when in fact they did not, they reinforced the lie by stating that they will continue to do so.

CNA is currently under investigation for just this kind of unlawful and Overly Zealous Defense in denying Defense Base Act Claims

Unless that is, the DoL IG failed to investigate previous requests or are simply failing to provide documents requested under the Freedom of Information Act.

Posted in AIG and CNA, Civilian Contractors, Contractor Casualties and Missing, Defense Base Act, Defense Base Act Attorneys, Defense Base Act Insurance, Defense Base Act Law and Procedure, Defense Base Act Lawyers, Defense Medical Examinations, Delay, Deny, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Hope that I die, Interviews with Injured War Zone Contractors, Iraq, LHWCA Longshore Harbor Workers Compesnation Act, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Veterans, War Hazards Act | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Under fire: Wartime stress as a defense for murder

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on May 6, 2012

This is the price that innocent people pay when PTSD and TBI are IGNORED by the Military, the Veterans Administration  and the Defense Base Act Insurance Companies.  The Defense Base Act Insurance Companies should be found guilty of murder themselves in many instances.

“We haven’t begun to see the wave of all this.”

Should post-traumatic stress disorder be a defense for murder? Watch “War Rage on Trial” on CNN Presents, Sunday, May 6 at 8 p.m./11p.m. ET.

CNN

Less than a year after returning from combat in Iraq, Nick Horner was charged with two murders.

Altoona, Pennsylvania (CNN) — Raymond Williams had just retired and was looking forward to traveling out west with his wife and spending time with his three grandchildren. But all those plans were shattered on April 6, 2009. As Williams, 64, went to get the mail on that spring day, he was gunned down by a man he’d never met.

His wife found his body.

“She said, you know ‘Matt! Matt! Somebody shot Dad,’” recalled Williams’ son, Matt. “It didn’t register. I’m thinking, ‘OK where is he now? Did they take him to the hospital? What hospital is he in?’ And before I could even get another word out, she goes ‘And he’s dead.’”

A short time earlier, the same gunman had killed a teenager and wounded a woman at a store in the same working-class town of Altoona in central Pennsylvania.

The gunman, Nicholas Horner, was a husband, a father, and a veteran soldier who had been awarded multiple medals for his service in Iraq, including a combat action badge. Less than a year after returning from combat, Horner faced two first degree murder charges and the possibility of the death penalty.

“Not in a million years could I believe this was true because Nick would never, he could never hurt anyone,” said Horner’s mother, Karen. “I know Nick. Nick pulled the trigger, but that wasn’t Nick.”

Please read the entire story here

Posted in ACE, AIG and CNA, Chartis, Defense Base Act Insurance, Delay, Deny, Hope that I die, Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

War is Brain-Damaging

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on March 18, 2012

The Defense Base Act Insurance Companies and the Department of Labor are as negligent as the Department of Defense when it comes denying the dangers of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury, and most negligently when a contractor suffers from both.

“a potentially lethal combination of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. When the frontal lobe — which controls emotions — is damaged, it simply can’t put on the brakes if a PTSD flashback unleashes powerful feelings. Seeing his buddy’s leg blown off may have unleashed a PTSD episode his damaged brain couldn’t stop”

The New York Times Sunday Review

These vets suffer from a particular kind of brain damage that results from repeated exposure to the concussive force of improvised explosive devices — I.E.D.’s — a regular event for troops traveling the roads in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“It’s Russian roulette,” one vet told me, “We had one guy in our company who got hit nine times before the 10th one waxed him.” An I.E.D. explosion can mean death or at least a lost arm or leg, but you don’t have to take a direct hit to feel its effects. A veteran who’d been in 26 blasts explained, “It feels like you’re whacked in the head with a shovel. When you come to, you don’t know whether you’re dead or alive.”

The news that Robert Bales, an Army staff sergeant accused of having killed 16 Afghan civilians last week, had suffered a traumatic brain injury unleashed a flurry of e-mails among those of us who have been trying to beat the drums about this widespread — and often undiagnosed — war injury. New facts about Staff Sgt. Bales are coming out daily. After we heard about the brain injury that resulted when his vehicle rolled over in an I.E.D. blast, we were told that he had lost part of his foot in a separate incident. Then we learned that the day before his rampage, he’d been standing by a buddy when that man’s leg was blown off. There are also reports of alcohol use.

People with more appropriate professional skills than mine will have to parse these facts, but from what I have learned in my work as a storyteller, this tragedy may be related to something I heard about in my interviews: a potentially lethal combination of post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury. When the frontal lobe — which controls emotions — is damaged, it simply can’t put on the brakes if a PTSD flashback unleashes powerful feelings. Seeing his buddy’s leg blown off may have unleashed a PTSD episode his damaged brain couldn’t stop. If alcohol was indeed part of the picture, it could have further undermined his compromised frontal lobe function

Please see the original and read more here

Posted in ACE, AIG and CNA, Chartis, Civilian Contractors, Department of Defense, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Injured Contractors, LHWCA Longshore Harbor Workers Compesnation Act, Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Afghan shooting suspect’s friend had leg blown off

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on March 16, 2012

From the AP  March 16, 2012

Attorney John Henry Browne talks to reporters, Thursday, March 15, 2012, in Seattle. Browne will be representing the U.S. soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

The soldier’s attorney, Seattle attorney John Henry Browne, told reporters Thursday that the day before the rampage, he saw his friend’s leg blown off.

Browne told The Associated Press that his client’s family provided him with details of the injury to another U.S. soldier. The details have not been independently verified.

“His leg was blown off, and my client was standing next to him,” he said Thursday.

It isn’t clear whether the incident might have helped prompt the horrific middle-of-the-night attack on civilians in two villages last Sunday. Browne said it affected all of the soldiers at the base.

The suspect had been injured twice during his three previous deployments to Iraq and didn’t want to go to Afghanistan to begin with, Browne said.

Browne declined to release his client’s name, citing concerns for the man’s family, which is under protection on Joint Base Lewis-McChord, near Tacoma. But he said the soldier has two young children, ages 3 and 4.

Please see the original and read more here

Posted in Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

US Spec Ops Serviceman, with diagnosed TBI, kills 16 in house to house village shooting

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on March 11, 2012

IGNORE THE SYMPTOMS, FAIL TO ACKNOWLEDGE,

Someone always pays, just not those responsible

Updated at 7:59 a.m. ET: KABUL, Afghanistan — The U.S. soldier who allegedly shot 16 Afghan villagers was caught on surveillance video that showed him walking up to his base and raising his arms in surrender, Afghan officials who viewed the footage said.

The video reportedly was shot from a blimp and showed the soldier walking up to his base covered in a traditional Afghan shawl. The soldier removed the shawl and put his weapon on the ground, then raised his arms in surrender, unidentified Afghan officials told Reuters and The Associated Press.


The video had been shown to investigators to help dispel a widely held belief among Afghans, including many members of parliament, that more than one soldier must have been involved because of the high death toll, the officials told journalists.

Shooting suspect was trained sniper  March12, 2012

The soldier detained for the shootings in Afghanistan was a qualified infantry sniper, a senior Department of Defense official told CNN. (See also: heightened security in Afghanistan)

The soldier was injured in a vehicle rollover while in Iraq in 2010, according to the official. The official described it as a non-combat rollover. He was diagnosed with Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) but was found fit for duty.

His family has been moved on to Joint Base Lewis-McChord for their safety, the official said.

After an Afghan soldier alerted the U.S. military at the base of the soldier’s initial departure, the U.S. military put up an aircraft to search for the missing soldier. Soon after, Afghan civilians came to the gate carrying wounded civilians, the first indication the military had of the shooting.

When the soldier turned himself over to the search party, he immediately invoked his rights not to speak. He has been moved to Kandahar and put in pre-trial confinement, a congressional source told CNN.

  March 11, 2012 10pm

“It appears he walked off post and later returned and turned himself in,” said Lt. Cmdr. James Williams, a military spokesman. The NATO force said the assailant acknowledged he had inflicted an unspecified number of casualties during the shootings, which began about 3 a.m.

The soldier’s name has not been released, but a U.S. official told ABC News he is a 38-year-old staff sergeant who is married with two children and had served three tours in Iraq This was his first tour in Afghanistan, where he has been since early December, the official said.

Separately, a senior U.S. military official confirmed that the sergeant was attached to a unit based at Lewis-McChord, located near Tacoma, and that he had been part of what is called a village-stabilization operation in Afghanistan, in which teams of Green Berets, supported by other soldiers, try to develop close ties with village elders, organize local police units and track down Taliban leaders. The official said the sergeant was not a Green Beret himself.

JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – A soldier accused of killing 16 Afghan civilians in cold blood while they slept is a staff sergeant from Joint Base Lewis-McChord, a U.S. official has confirmed

The soldier’s name has not been released, but a U.S. official told ABC News he is a 38-year-old staff sergeant who is married with two children, and served three tours in Iraq. This was his first tour in Afghanistan, where he has been since early December, the official said

LA Times  March 11, 2012

Reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan — A lone American serviceman slipped away from his base in southern Afghanistan before dawn Sunday and went on a methodical house-to-house shooting spree in a nearby village, killing 16 people, nearly all of them women and children, according to Afghan officials who visited the scene.

The NATO force confirmed that the assailant was in military custody, and that he had inflicted an unspecified number of casualties during the shooting spree at about 3 a.m. Sunday. The U.S. Embassy called for calm and expressed deep condolences; the Taliban referred to the killings as an “act of genocide.”

The British Broadcasting Corp. reported that the shooter was a staff sergeant and a member of the U.S. special operations forces who had been involved in training the Afghan police.

The incident, potentially the worst atrocity of the 10-year war to be deliberately carried out by a single member of the Western military, represents a stunning setback to U.S.-Afghan relations, already shaken by last month’s burning of copies of the Koran at a U.S. military base north of Kabul

Please see the original and read more here

Posted in Afghanistan, Follow the Money, Iraq, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Contractor Stabs Wife, tries to burn down home

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on December 30, 2011

His own attorney even filed paperwork saying she’s worried about Parker’s mental well-being and wanted him evaluated

Parker’s attorney confirms the husband and wife both worked as civilian contractors in Iraq. Neighbors say when they came back, everything seemed normal. Thursday’s alleged stabbing and fire was the last thing they expected.

HOUSTON (KTRK) –December 29, 2011

Houston police have arrested a man they say stabbed his wife and tried to set his own home on fire. Neighbors and investigators say this was not the first time there have been problems at that home.

Investigators are still trying to sort out the details that left Craig Parker and his wife both injured. Parker’s wife has been treated at Memorial Hermann Northwest and was expected to be released late in the day. Craig was treated and released from the hospital, but he remains in police custody.

The fire trucks and ambulance shattered the early morning quiet along the 6500 block of TC Jester. Police say Craig Parker stabbed his wife, then poured gasoline around their home before attempting to set it on fire.

James LaGrone lives next door.

“I didn’t see nothing,” he said. “I’m standing in my driveway trying to wonder what was going on. I know there’s a big commotion there, but I don’t know what’s going on.”

Firefighters quickly put out the small fire, and Parker’s wife was taken to the hospital. Initially, firefighters didn’t know where to find Parker.

“We didn’t know for sure where he was,” explained Houston Fire Department District Chief Michael Thorp. “He reportedly was still in the house. As it turns out, he was. He bailed out of a window.”

Parker was treated and released from the hospital, but the alleged stabbing wasn’t his only brush with the law. Court documents show last June he was accused of kicking his wife. His own attorney even filed paperwork saying she’s worried about Parker’s mental well-being and wanted him evaluated

Parker’s attorney confirms the husband and wife both worked as civilian contractors in Iraq. Neighbors say when they came back, everything seemed normal. Thursday’s alleged stabbing and fire was the last thing they expected.

Posted in Civilian Contractors, Iraq, Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »

Department of Labor District Offices Dead in the Water

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on December 16, 2011

Posted in ACE, AIG and CNA, Blackwater, Civilian Contractors, Contractor Casualties and Missing, DBA Attorneys Fees, Defense Base Act, Defense Base Act Insurance, Defense Base Act Law and Procedure, Department of Labor, Dropping the DBA Ball, Follow the Money, Injured Contractors, LHWCA Longshore Harbor Workers Compesnation Act, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Ronco Consultilng, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Nearly a year after her husband committed suicide, Air Force widow still wonders why

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on September 25, 2011

Melissa hates that a man that heroic is judged by friends, family and strangers. She braces herself for judgment every time she has to tell someone how Jeremy died.

NWF Daily News    September 17, 2011

MARY ESTHER —Jeremy Gibson is a casualty of war, but you won’t find his name on any memorial wall.

On a balmy Monday afternoon last Oct. 11, the Hurlburt Field Explosive Ordnance Disposal technician dialed 911, walked into his backyard and took his life.

“He shot himself in the heart,” said his wife, Melissa.

Jeremy was 31.

In the 11 months since then, Melissa has been forced to cope with blame from others and the guilt she harbors. There were no signs that Jeremy was contemplating suicide, but Melissa says she will play the “what if” game until the day she dies.

Jeremy wasn’t a complicated guy. The native of Chattanooga, Tenn., was incredibly smart, good at math and chemistry and often was misjudged as a “know-it-all.”

He knew a lot about cars and loved racing at amateur tracks. He and Melissa would go on drives in his blue Mini Cooper with no destination in mind. Jeremy always picked the winding roads for “precision driving” (aka speeding).

Melissa said he ate French fries only for the texture in his massive consumption of ketchup.

He was like a kid on Christmas when Melissa returned from the store with Blue Monster energy drinks and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

He taped and edited videos for fun and brought his wife a snow globe from every TDY.

Melissa called Jeremy her little James Bond.

His work took him to Peru with President George W. Bush and to Paris with Colin Powell. He covered the Republican National Convention and guarded the Bush family on Thanksgiving Day.

There were missions with explosives so massive that Jeremy did not bother with a bomb suit; it wouldn’t have helped.

Melissa hates that a man that heroic is judged by friends, family and strangers. She braces herself for judgment every time she has to tell someone how Jeremy died

Please read the entire story here

Posted in Department of Defense, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Suicide | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

PTSD’S Worst-Case Scenario

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on September 9, 2011

At an Army base near Seattle, soldiers are committing suicide, murdering their families—and in one case, waterboarding their own kids. Winston Ross reports from a base on the brink

Winston Ross at The Daily Beast  August 9, 2011

Back when Jonathan Gilbert was still in middle school, he attended his cousin’s graduation ceremony from the U.S. Army’s basic training, watching men in neatly pressed uniforms marching, saluting one another, and smiling.

“That was it for him,” Gilbert’s mother, Karrie Champion, tells The Daily Beast. “He knew what he wanted to do. He enlisted before he was out of high school.”

The boy had no idea what he was getting into—that he’d wind up in Iraq, driving a Stryker, watching the unit in the caravan ahead of him roll off a bridge and land upside down. Two soldiers were killed, one of them decapitated. Nineteen-year-old Jonathan helped clean up the body parts.

This event and his upcoming redeployment, Gilbert’s mom believes, is what led her son to kill himself on July 28 at the age of 21, forcing a pistol to his head and pulling the trigger after a violent struggle with a fellow soldier who apparently tried to stop him. It was the 11th “suspicious death” (the Army has yet to officially declare any of them suicides) of a soldier stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord this year. Assuming they’re all ruled suicides, that tops the previous record set the year before, of nine. The year before that, there were nine suicides, too.

Champion, along with a growing legion of modern-day war veterans and their families, says it’s long past time the Army took notice of a tragic, preventable epidemic—one that seems especially acute at Lewis-McChord.

The base, an hour or so south of Seattle, was named by the government-owned, independent news source Stars and Stripes last year as the most troubled in the military, thanks to an “incredible” number of incidents rooted in post-traumatic stress disorder, says Joseph Carter, a former Army sergeant with two Iraq tours under his belt.

Please read the entire story here

Posted in Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Soldier suspected in 4 slayings found dead

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on August 29, 2011

UPI August 29, 2011

PHILADELPHIA, Aug. 28 (UPI) — A U.S. Army officer suspected of shooting four people to death and wounding two police officers was found dead Sunday in Pennsylvania, authorities said.

The body of Capt. Leonard Egland, 37, of Fort Lee, Va., was found in brush on a vacant lot in Warwick Township about 3:40 p.m., The Philadelphia Inquirer reported Buck County District Attorney David W. Heckler said. Egland apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot, authorities said.

The newspaper said Egland took flight after allegedly gunning down his estranged wife, her boyfriend and the man’s son in Virginia. He then apparently drove to the Philadelphia area where he shot his former mother-in-law dead at her home in Buckingham Township Saturday night.

Investigators said Egland had his young daughter with him and dropped her at the emergency room of a hospital in Quakertown. Hospital personnel called police but Egland allegedly fled and later fired at pursuing officers. Two Doylestown officers suffered minor wounds.

The Inquirer said Egland apparently returned to Virginia from an overseas deployment last week

Please read the entire story at UPI

Posted in Melt Down, PTSD and TBI | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Friends, family coping with a hero’s suicide

Posted by defensebaseactcomp on August 14, 2011

And comrades say his death is a warning that returning troops and their families need more help to cope with post-combat stress

New Hampshire Sunday News

James Keenan was a “true-blue American hero,” and that’s how his family wants people to remember him.

Keenan, a decorated New Hampshire Army National Guardsman, volunteered for two tours of duty in Iraq, earning the Bronze Star with Valor for saving his entire squad in an ambush nearly seven years ago.

The evening of June 29, Keenan died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head in his Newmarket apartment.

Keenan, 33, left behind his parents and sister, a 7-year-old son, Robbie — and far more questions than answers.

Posted in Hope that I die, Melt Down, Political Watch, PTSD and TBI, Suicide | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 210 other followers

%d bloggers like this: