Veteran’s Day Is Over, But For Many, The Struggle Continues
Updated: Nov 21
- By Kyle Orr
Denton, Texas –
Veteran’s Day is a national holiday that is reserved for honoring those who have served and continue to serve in the U.S. armed forces.
Although this holiday has passed, the struggle for many veterans at home is ongoing. PTSD, the harsh transition to civilian life, and lack of effective mental health care are all factors that contribute to the alarming statistics of post-9/11 veteran suicides.
Since September 11, 2001, 30,000 active-duty personnel and veterans of post-9/11 wars have died by suicide, according to the USO. This number is four times higher than the total number of U.S. troop deaths that occurred during military operations in that same time period. Although most U.S. operations in Iraq and Afghanistan have now ceased, the effects of these wars on those who served are everlasting.
According to the US Department of Veteran Affairs, there were a reported 6,146 veteran suicides throughout the country in 2020, which is a rate of over 16 veteran suicides per day. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for many of today’s veterans to have known a fellow servicemember who has taken their own life. Many are beginning to realize that the same government that they fought for cannot accommodate the needs of veterans in distress.
It’s becoming clear that spreading awareness and preventing suicide depends on each individual taking care of the person next to them, just like every service member is trained to do. Recognizing red flags and reaching out to a veteran in need has proven to be one of the most important tools in reducing suicides across the country.
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide or is showing signs of distress, please reach out to the Veteran Crisis Line by dialing 998, then pressing 1. Enrollment in Veterans’ Affairs benefits or healthcare is not required.