Soldier stories

Portraits of valor

With powerful tributes to warriors past and present, artist and Sergeant Brian Kennedy is using his gift to help Veterans overcome their personal battles. - Read more > 

Ben McCrosky doesn’t remember the explosion or the noise or the smell or the pain or that someone grabbed him and pulled him out of the light armored vehicle he had been riding in just moments before. The only thing he remembers is the worst part. Read more >

Inside Green Beret training

Special Forces training is so intense that marching 5 kilometers while carrying nearly 50 pounds starting at 5:30 a.m. doesn’t count as part of the training. One of the toughest days of SFAS awaits them—12 miles of marching, all while carrying, pushing or pulling heavy equipment. But they don’t know about any of that. Their view of what lies ahead remains as dark as the sky above them. 

Jupiter shines low in the sky to their right, but neither 73 nor 99 nor 224 notices. They keep their heads down, putting one foot in front of the other, their boots making new prints on top of old ones on this dirt road where dreams sometimes flourish, sometimes die. 

Thousands of men have marched on this road.

Only the best have become Green Berets.

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An Oklahoma Soldier and her daughter use fitness to fight children's cancer. But their determination was put to the test when they took a 22-mile hike—in 5 inches of snow. 



Pain ripped through his abdomen as blood poured out of a bullet wound. Another bullet had shattered his wrist, and still one more ricocheted off of his helmet. He thought he was going to die. He thought of his wife and kids back in Ohio. Then he thought: "Fuck this. I'm not dying in this fucking country." Read more > 

Tom Davis sounds worn out. In a few days, he will race his handcycle in the New York City Marathon, one of the most famous races in the world. He will fly from his home in Indiana to New York City to compete, but he admits he's not terribly excited about it.

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Bill Anderson dances sometimes as he walks along, for no reason other than because he can.

Considering the fact that doctors operated on the 84-year-old Army veteran’s knees four times and on the rest of him 11 times more, that’s impressive. Add to that two surgeries this year, one for cancer, one for a cataract. Yet as a member of the Rowan County Honor Guard, he still managed to work 177 funerals (missing only 16) through late July, including one for which he came straight from the hospital.

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During an ambush by Taliban fighters in Afghanistan in 2009, California Guard Staff Sergeant Kevin Duerst witnessed Army Captain William Swenson risk his life to evacuate comrades, a feat that led to Swenson getting the highest decoration for valor.

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