The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Remind troops of importance

Suicide rates are increasing — with our soldiers.

According to a USA Today article, Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the military is facing a suicide “crisis.”

The Army’s suicide rate has increased this past year, setting a record of 160 confirmed and suspected deaths. In 2008, the Army recorded 140. The Marine Corps suffered a record of 52 last year as well. This is an issue — a big issue — that should not be brushed aside.

The article said that the winter season was the worst for these deaths. Twenty-nine in the Army killed themselves in January 2009 — almost twice the number killed in combat for that month.The next month brought 27 more.

Gen. Peter Chiarelli, the Army’s vice chief of staff, said in the article that officials should check in on all soldiers because it’s vital for them to “know and understand their self-worth.”

This isn’t something only Army officials should show their soldiers — people who are dedicating their lives to this country.

The patriotism for soldiers was strong after 9/11, but the unity and support seemed to diminish since then.

They’re still out in the battlefield. They’re still fighting. Remember that.

A quick snippet on the local news of troops returning home or a hero who has died in battle isn’t enough to commemorate all they do. Neither is a yellow-ribbon bumper sticker or one Veterans Day memorial rally.

The article said suicides may be linked to the long-term separations from home and the torn relationships soldiers may deal with caused by the current wars.

Something needs to change to show struggling troops across seas that they’re remembered, why they’re there and what they’re doing. Show support. Show them they’re still needed.

Find support groups and send letters of appreciation. If writing isn’t your forte, then create a YouTube video of appreciation.

There are many different ways to show support. Don’t forget the troops’ importance. They need us just as much as we need them.

For those who already do more to honor these heroes, thanks for supporting them and all they do.

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