No matter how many videos I see on Sofrep (thank you!), as a civilian, the dedication all of you have is nearly incomprehensible to me, but thank you so very, very much for the difficult work you do.
Working with new amputees, from disease rather than war, and including a young double mastectomy patient, I quickly learned it's not the body parts that make a human, it's their heart, soul, personality.
It takes nothing away from WHO you are, but it does take away the perception of yourself. It can't and doesn't make one less of a man or a woman, see above statement.
That said, it's a huge hurdle for the person missing a body part. Initial trauma, loss, grief, and of course dealing with other humans. And one big reason there's so much difficulty is, if you haven't experienced it, you can't really, deeply, totally relate to what the amputee is going through--you have no reference point.
Empathy helps, sympathy not so much, pity not at all.
Like you, I'd give a lot to ease this burden of returning wounded warriors, unfortunately it's not possible. What is possible is what @Tango9 said--Give to Wounded Warriors. Perhaps more important, get involved with these folks and be there for them.
@Tango9 I'm cussing for you, just not out loud.
I kind of obsess about this particular engagement. I wasn't there, I was 4000 miles away (or some such) standing in a place watching it happen. But we knew Capt Self was continually calling for help, and there were a shit ton of men looking at the commander on-scene begging him to make the right call.
And he failed. Miserably. Devastatingly. Tear-your-rank-off-and-go-home-because-you-suck kind of fail. It's been how many years? And I'm still as furious about it as I was that day. Mad as fuck. I could rant on for a bit but I'll just leave it there. Fill in the blanks. Use a lot of profanity.
@Tango9 I misspoke. Having re-read my comment I did not mean to point the arrow at Capt Self, but at the CC that refused to release the QRF.
I know Brandon was in the TOC and kitted up feet from the ramp when the no-go came down so I'm sure he's 20x more pissed than I am.
I feel compelled to ask some questions, difficult as they may be.
What happened to that sucky, total fail sheep of a commander who didn't let the guys go in to help the Rangers? I would've had his head rolling by end of day if I had known what he did, or actually did NOT do.
Has anyone heard any updates on that guy who shot Chris & Chad? The news has been pretty quiet lately about that.
@MR151 He's in jail. That's all I know.
Regarding the CC in the subject engagement I have no idea. This thing still lies on my mental shelf of Things That Piss Me Off (tm), but I only pull it out when I have to.
I just saw this and remembered reading about Robert's Ridge when I was in basic. This was a great video because it covered a lot of the deeper aspects for the guys in Special Operations and Combat Arms rather than the hollywood stuff that you see on most websites. Thanks for putting this one up.
What I observed from Chris K. and Chris O., as well as Brandon, was in the brief moments of pause and introspection that you can tell that no soldier should ever be forgotten or tossed aside. The eye contact and reflection on what they've seen and heard throughout their military career speak volumes to me.
Chris, you're one of the most fiercely loyal men I've ever seen (and that's coming from a Marine). You said everything but, "Nobody fucks with my boys," when talking about our heroes. I appreciate that man. I feel the same way. Not many people understand the level of gratitude, respect, and sanctity we as a nation should have for these men and women. I think everyone is thankful, but there's a much deeper meaning than that. When somebody sees the fire lit inside you like that they start thinking a little deeper about why you feel so strongly about our boys. Semper Fi.
Great stuff. What Chris K. says at the end is the heart of it: we need to take care of our boys. Don't fawn over them like they're weak and need a popsicle, but be there, help them when they need it. It's not a matter of $$ it's a matter of taking care of our own.
Giving to Wounded Warriors is a great first step, but don't think that by doing that your debt to these guys is repaid.
You keep talking about that commander, and I keep remembering an old African(or Arab, its origins are disputed) proverb that is roughly something like "an army of sheep led by a lion can beat an army of lions led by a sheep". Basically, indecision is itself a decision, and sometimes it leads to terrible consequences.
I tell my 11 yr old son and 14 yr old daughter not to look to American idol, NFL or NBA to find their hero's, if they want a REAL American idol to look up the wounded warrior foundation! Those who gave it all, and you guys!
By the way Brandon, what kind of watch are you wearing?? Is that a Resco?...just looked cool as did Chris's(Kyle) and i have a bit of a watch obsession..lol
Great episode. I always want the episodes to be longer but this one....this one made me tear up a bit...i live in VA..been to Bethesda quite a few times. Chris was spot on. Those guys always seem to be in good spirits yet i'm the one looking at them trying not to cry...
A great segment- on the wounded soldiers-- agree --we should take cae of them. I have too, have done a fund raiser for the wounded heroes. I am hoping to work with Marcus Latrell's Lone Survivor organization to help there too.
Great episode guys, I am currently working on some fundraising projects for Wounded Warriors and The Special Operations Warrior Fund, Listening to Chris really inspires me to step it up, and do something for these guys coming home.
Man that reminds me of Chapter 9 in Lone Survivor when LT Michael Patrick Murphy is on the phone with HQ saying "My man are dying out here".
I'm really glad I did not have to listen to those radio calls for support. I've been written up before for disobeying orders, I woulda gotten full UCMJ treatment for beating down that commander.
Chris and Chris were dead-on right. When our guys are home in the civilian community missing a limb and by themselves the rest of us really need to step-up. If you served and came back with your life and all your limbs remember to be thankful and help your brothers who weren't so lucky.
@jrexilius all my problems look trivial (as most are) when I see a young amputee/burn victim. 25yr old Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne, lost both legs and both arms from an IED in Afghanistan, and its amazing to see his 'recovery' if you can call it that. We're all forever indebted to men like these.
I'm glad that I didn't have to listen to those guys pleading for extract, etc. I would have lost it.
@TheShowstopper1 It was tough.
@PONI It should be prison time for that commander. 7 men died at the Battle of Takur Ghar (Robert's Ridge) and that could have been at the very least mitigated as Brandon pointed out.
@PONI true and good point.
@Tango9 with the caliber of most chopper pilots I ever hitched a ride with in a tight spot, he'd probably be asking what the hell took ya'll so long to get here.That should have been a career ender for that commander and even that wouldn't do it justice.
Awesome as usual. Brandon, you should consider doing an AMA (ask me anything) with the SOFREP crew on http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA It would be a great place to get more exposure to the site and SOF in general.
@BrandonWebb It took me forever to find this, but this is basically a good guide to the AMA. https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B324Hj3W77gJa25OZ093RzBXVjA/edit?pli=1
@BrandonWebb I suppose I should explain Reddit a bit more. Reddit is a community of subcommunitys or "subreddits". These subreddits can range from almost any topic, including guns, military, music, computers ect. The IAMA subreddit is there for you to allow people to ask you questions. As an example, someone said here ( http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/i3s61/iama_former_navy_seal/ ) That he was a former Navy SEAL. The mods contacted other SEALS who could varify his claim (including Don Shipley, if I'm not mistaken), and then he was asked questions about it. So, say you did a SOFREP AMA. You would post as you did before, with maybe a title of "We are SOFREP, a collection of people from all Special Operations branches. Ask us Almost Anything." You could have the contributors of SOFREP make an account, and you all answer questions about your respective branches. You could also post your content links, in www.reddit.com/r/military regarding the military, or maybe www.reddit.com/r/worldnews for posts that have to do with news. If you need any more help, just ask and I'll hit you up through your Facebook. Reddit is an awesome place to promote, an has subreddits for every type of person.
@Skunk good idea.