“In one study, more than 85% of former Pacific War POW’s have PTSD forty years after WWII!” (Reference page 346-7, Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand.)

I am recommending another book, Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand.  In this story, the heroism and experiences of men who served in the Army Air Corp, including former USC track star and 1936 Olympian, Louie Zamperini, reinforced my strong respect for all veterans of wars, especially those who served during WWII.  What is especially tragic, and lives on today as a legacy of war, are the widespread and invisible emotional consequences, including severe symptoms of PTSD.  The Pacific POW’s who survived air, sea, and ground combat, and sometimes many weeks of survival at sea, also endured brutal and horrific treatment in Japanese POW camps.  The data from research referenced in the book shows lives ruined and tormented, including suffering by loved ones.

In my book, Reconciliation: A Son’s Story, my Dad, Vernon, was affected the same way, and this is just one family’s experience with PTSD over many decades following WWII.  The inter-generational consequences with the children of WWII veterans and subsequent wars cannot be ignored.  We all continue to live with PTSD and the treatment required to maintain a stable and healthy life as individuals and in loving relationships.

I am thankful that PTSD is getting so much attention and more commitment to research as announced by First Lady, Michelle Obama, last week.  My goal with this blog and book is to support the campaign for PTSD awareness.  I highly recommend Unbroken, by Laura Hillebrand, as an excellent read and resource in understanding the roots and implications of PTSD often suffered by combat veterans and their families for a lifetime.  Go to www.unbrokern-book.com, www.laurahillenbrandbooks.com.

Steve Sparks
Author
Reconciliation: A Son’s Story