Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Day 11

Day 11: Jeff
Age: 30
Major: ("Right now or next week?") Fine Arts
Hometown: Houston
Connection to me: Printmaking

Me: Whats the story behind your tattoo?
Jeff: It represents my father who died when I was 16. I got it in when I was in the army in Korea because my dad was a 3rd degree black belt.
Me: How did he die?
Jeff: Cancer
Me: Are you happy you joined the army?
Jeff: Yes, though I wish I did it when I was younger- right out of high school. It was a great learning experience but I came home because I got hurt.
Me: Where were you?
Jeff: South Korea, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
Me: What was your job?
Jeff: I was a crew chief for a black hawk (helicopter).
Me: What is that?
Jeff: Basically the mechanic and gunner.
Me: How was it to come back?
Jeff: Culture shock. When I was there I missed my family but when I came back I missed the people I was with. I felt lost not having it in my life anymore and knowing that I can't go back.
Me: How long were you away for? 
Jeff: The longest time was for 16 months, a total of 6 and a half years.
Me: Tell me about PTSD.
Jeff: Its different for everyone. Some kids wake up in the middle of the night and think they are still there. I wake up often thinking I'm still there. Some people have it even when they are awake.
Me: When you were injured, did you ever fear loosing an arm or leg, or your life?
Jeff: No, I was more worried for everyone else in my unit.
Me: Would you promote joining the army?
Jeff: Its a strong decision to be made. I don't think people with spouses should go.
Me: I agree.

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