Soldiers Say Army Ignores, Punishes Mental Anguish The Army says it has extensive mental-health programs and services for soldiers returning from Iraq. But some stressed-out soldiers at Colorado's Ft. Carson say that instead of giving them help, officials are purging them from the ranks.
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Soldiers Say Army Ignores, Punishes Mental Anguish

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Soldiers Say Army Ignores, Punishes Mental Anguish

Soldiers Say Army Ignores, Punishes Mental Anguish

Soldiers Say Army Ignores, Punishes Mental Anguish

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/6576505/6577449" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Medical records show that when Tyler Jennings returned from Iraq last year, he was severely depressed and used drugs to cope. When the sergeants who ran his platoon found out, they started to haze him. He came close to hanging himself after officials said they would kick him out of the Army. Daniel Zwerdling, NPR hide caption

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Daniel Zwerdling, NPR

Hear Jennings Describe What Happened When He Saw His Company Commander

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Corey Davis was a machine gunner in Iraq. He says he began "freaking out" after he returned to Ft. Carson; he had constant nightmares and began using drugs. When he sought help at the base hospital one day, he says he was told he'd have to wait more than a month to be seen. Courtesy Corey Davis hide caption

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Courtesy Corey Davis

Corey Davis was a machine gunner in Iraq. He says he began "freaking out" after he returned to Ft. Carson; he had constant nightmares and began using drugs. When he sought help at the base hospital one day, he says he was told he'd have to wait more than a month to be seen.

Courtesy Corey Davis
Jason Harvey
Rick Stone for NPR

Alex Orum, pictured with his wife Donna, was diagnosed with PTSD. He was dismissed from the Army earlier this year for "patterns of misconduct" — such as showing up late to formation and coming to work unwashed. Psychiatrists say such behaviors are consistent with PTSD. Daniel Zwerdling, NPR hide caption

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Daniel Zwerdling, NPR

Referring to soldiers with PTSD, recently retired sergeant Nathan Towsley told NPR that "I don't like people who are weak-minded." He said he'd never be caught going to a therapist. Since that interview, he's acknowledged that he's depressed and has trouble controlling his anger. He has just started therapy. Danny Zwerdling, NPR hide caption

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Danny Zwerdling, NPR

Corey Davis, Tyler Jennings and Sgts. Drew Preston and Gabriel Temples all served in the same platoon in Iraq. Preston and Temples say Davis and Jennings were great soldiers in Iraq. But the sergeants think they've been "faking" their mental-health problems to avoid returning to war. Courtesy Corey Davis hide caption

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Courtesy Corey Davis

Corey Davis, Tyler Jennings and Sgts. Drew Preston and Gabriel Temples all served in the same platoon in Iraq. Preston and Temples say Davis and Jennings were great soldiers in Iraq. But the sergeants think they've been "faking" their mental-health problems to avoid returning to war.

Courtesy Corey Davis

Web Extra: A Family's Story

Liz Kaplan

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Web Extra: Silenced in Therapy

Michael Lemke

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