Showing posts with label UK military. Show all posts
Showing posts with label UK military. Show all posts

Sunday, May 24, 2020

UK:Military Members In Crisis Need Hope Now

Suicide is not your only way to end the pain

Here in the US, we have more suicides, about 500 a year within the military according to the Department of Defense. We also have far too many veterans committing suicide. Some want to pretend they know the number, but there are too many variables to know for sure what the true number is.

We have been trying to change the outcome, but few with the power to change things will listen. We are talking to those suffering and given up on changing the minds of those in charge.

Learn what PTSD and why you have it and the start fighting to #TakeBackYourLife! You are not defective, not weak, not less than anyone else and not beyond hope. You can heal and whatever you need to do it, it out there waiting for you to find it. If you are only looking for a way to end it, instead of making your life better, that is all you will find.

Time to train to heal as hard as you trained to do your jobs.....

Ministry of Defence urged to tackle PTSD as suicide attempts among troops increase

The Mirror
BySean Rayment
23 MAY 2020
EXCLUSIVE: Freedom of Information figures show that 46 soldiers, seven members of the Royal Navy and eight personnel serving in the RAF attempted suicide or injured themselves in January alone

This year at least five soldiers are feared to have killed themselves (Image: Getty)

Serving troops are trying to kill themselves or self-harming at the rate of two a day, horrifying figures reveal.

The toll released in Mental Health Awareness week raises fresh questions over forces’ handling of conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder.

The “snapshot” showed 61 incidents in January alone.

Official Ministry of Defence statistics disclose that the troops who sought help had attempted to hang themselves, overdose or slash their wrists with a knife.

But military mental health support groups say the figure is the “tip of the iceberg” and warn that many of those self-harming could attempt suicide.

The figures mean that over 700 military personnel could attempt suicide or self-harm if the number of incidents continue at the same rate for the next 12 months.
read it here

Monday, March 9, 2020

Decorated UK War Hero Fighting For Better Care After Attempted Suicide

War hero demands better mental health services for veterans after PTSD caused breakdown

The Express UK
Mar 9, 2020
“I could go and see the doctor, for six months, if I was lucky and she could fit me in once a week. But that was only four sessions a month, so 24 sessions in total. That doesn’t even get through all the trauma of one tour.”

Ex-Colour Sergeant Trevor Coult and his son

He witnessed numerous friends get killed or sustain horrific injuries during a brutal three tours in Afghanistan. Mr Coult was awarded the third-highest military honour for bravery for fighting off suicide bombers and gunmen who ambushed his convoy in Baghdad, Iraq, in 2005.

Mr Coult then survived eight bomb blasts and 76 enemy engagements during three operational tours of Afghanistan.

But he attempted to kill himself by driving his car into a wall.
read it here

Monday, March 2, 2020

UK still unsure what to do to stop military suicides after cluster in 2 months

More than a dozen former British soldiers who fought in Afghanistan kill themselves within two months

The Independent
Kate Ng
2 hours ago
The recent spate of suicides will expedite government plans for new mental health services for veterans which are due to begin in April and will complement NHS programmes on problems like PTSD, addiction and debt, The Times reported Mr Mercer as saying.

A soldier from the 1st Battalion Royal Regiment Fusiliers leaves the security of the camp walls to conduct a dawn foot patrol in the Nahr-e Saraj district, Helmand Province, Afghanistan ( PA )
More than a dozen former British soldiers who fought in Afghanistan have died by suicide in a short period of time, it has been reported.

The Times reported that some 14 former and serving army personnel are thought to have killed themselves in the past two months.

MP Johnny Mercer told the newspaper in an interview he was concerned over the cluster of deaths involving a “specific unit that served at a specific time in Afghanistan… the bloodiest time”.

The Minister for Defence People and Veterans was referring to veterans involved in Operation Herrick, which is the codename for all British operations conducted between 2002 and 2014 in Afghanistan.

By the end of 2014, 453 soldiers died during Operation Herrick. According to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), there were 29 coroner-confirmed suicides and open verdict deaths of army personnel who were previously deployed to Operation Herrick as of February 2018.
read it here

Monday, December 2, 2019

Mel B furious another veteran committed suicide

Mel B angry over lack of help to ex-bodyguard who killed self

Gulf Today
December 2, 2019
Ash was in the defence forces for 12 years and apparently suffered mentally after leaving the Marines.
Mel-B-750 Singer Mel B poses for the photographers. File photo/AFP

Singer Mel B has said that more needs to be done in order to help those in the forces dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) following the death of her former bodyguard, Corporal Ash Nickles (31).

Corporal Ash Nickles, an Afghanistan war veteran, was found dead at his home wearing his ceremonial blues uniform along with his medals on November 22, reports

It is reported that the former Marine sought help from two different medical centres for his PTSD, but both allegedly turned him down.

And this did not go down well with Mel B.

She said: "It was a damming indictment of lack of help for those suffering from PTSD, who are in such desperate need. I talked a lot to Ash about PTSD. I suffer from it as a result of an emotional and abusive marriage and he suffered from it as a result of what he went through and what he saw in war zones.
read it here

Sunday, June 2, 2019

UK Iraq veteran crosses finish line with help from "brothers"

Emotional moment Hull's heroic wounded veteran walks across Hull 10k finish line

Hull Live
BySophie Kitching
2 JUN 2019

This is the joyous moment war veteran Chris Ashton, who lost the ability to walk after being hit by a grenade in Iraq, crossed the finishing line of the Hull 10k.
Mr Ashton, 35, had life-changing surgery after he was injured while serving in 2006. The incident has also affected his ability to talk.
Just as he did last year with the help of charity Hull 4 Heroes, Mr Ashton was pushed around the Hull 10k on Sunday morning, and managed to walk the final steps across the finishing line, cheered on by his supporters.

Mr Ashton was a radio operator with the Royal Logistics Corp and was attached to The Black Watch in Iraq in 2006 when a grenade hit his face at a speed of 1,500mph.

The grenade shattered his skull, and has left him blind in one eye.
read more here

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Veteran lost best friend to suicide, took back his own life

PTSD: 'My best friend's death gave me back my life'

Ben Bryant
14 May 2019

Why do the rates of post traumatic stress disorder appear to be rising in veterans?

“John Paul Finnigan’s death gave me life. Something changed in me from that day. I put the drugs down, I went into treatment and got healthy, and it was all down to John Paul’s death. He gave me life.”  Lee Harding

Warning: some upsetting content

"No. I’m not really going to go into that."

Lee Harding cups the side of his face with his palm and paws it softly. His other arm is folded across his chest. He is staring at the wall. His fingers brush a tattoo of two teardrops on his cheek.

"I can’t talk about that," he says quietly, without looking at me.

Lee’s home is unfinished. There are fillers and paints and building materials scattered around the rooms. The lounge has an easy chair and a sofa. There is no TV, there are no pictures and the walls need painting. Lee acknowledges all this with a shrug when I arrive, explaining that some kids had trashed the place before he moved in, and he’s been rebuilding it. It is a new beginning for the house in Merseyside.

It’s a new beginning for Lee too. He has been piecing his life back together over the last year, after he found himself caught in a spiral of drug use, which he says was an attempt to escape the trauma of what he witnessed in combat. Shortly after he returned from Iraq, Lee was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

As a soldier, he served on the front line from 2005 to 2008 with 1st Battalion Royal Green Jackets, which later amalgamated with four other regiments to form 2nd Battalion, The Rifles. Recently, he has noticed that many of the people he was deployed to Iraq with have been struggling.

Several are in treatment for drug and alcohol dependency. And two members of his regiment – Kevin Williams, 29 and John Paul Finnigan, 34 – killed themselves last year, the latter one of Lee’s best friends. A third, Kevin Holt, 30, also died after a lengthy battle with PTSD.
read more here

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Widow sues British Army after husband lost battle to PTSD

Widow of war veteran who killed himself to sue British Army over his death

Birmingham Live
Sean Rayment and James Roger
May 5, 2019
“The Government, the NHS and the Ministry of Defence need to wake up to their responsibilities. These agencies can’t carry on as if veterans’ lives don’t matter." Jo Jukes
Jo with her late husband David in 2015

A war veteran's heartbroken widow is to sue the NHS, Ministry of Defence and police in a landmark case.

Jo Jukes is grieving her husband David's tragic death.

The 47-year-old says it could have been ­prevented.

David, a Staffordshire Regiment war veteran, killed himself.

The 49-year-old was a lance corporal in the Staffordshire Regiment, and served in nearly every major British deployment in the last 25 years.

These included Iraq, Afghanistan and Bosnia.

Since his death, a further 60 veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are believed to have killed themselves.

Jo wants better communication between the agencies responsible for his mental health.

The mum-of-two is believed to be the first widow to plan legal action following the suicide of a veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder.
read more here

#BreakTheSilence and #TakeBackYourLife

Saturday, April 6, 2019

Is Mindfulness still more hype than help for PTSD?

What is the DOD filling their heads with now?

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 6, 2019

Last year the BBC reported that many were thinking that "Mindfulness" was actually more hype than help.

Mindfulness meditation has been practiced for millennia – and today is a billion-dollar business. But how much does the practice really change our health?
“There is a common misperception in public and government domains that compelling clinical evidence exists for the broad and strong efficacy of mindfulness as a therapeutic intervention,” a group of 15 scholars wrote in a recent article entitled Mind the Hype. The reality is that mindfulness-based therapies have shown “a mixture of only moderate, low or no efficacy, depending on the disorder being treated,” the scholars wrote, citing a 2014 meta-analysis commissioned by the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.
So how it is that now members of NATO, including Maj. Gen. Piatt of the 10th Mountain Division thinks it works great?
The British Royal Navy has given mindfulness training to officers, and military leaders are rolling it out in the Army and Royal Air Force for some officers and enlisted soldiers. The New Zealand Defence Force recently adopted the technique, and military forces of the Netherlands are considering the idea, too. This week, NATO plans to hold a two-day symposium in Berlin to discuss the evidence behind the use of mindfulness in the military.
Well that was from the following article reported yesterday on the New York Times. What is your head full of right now?
The Latest in Military Strategy:

The New York Times
By Matt Richtel
April 5, 2019

“I was asked recently if my soldiers call me General Moonbeam,” said Maj. Gen. Piatt, who was director of operations for the Army and now commands its 10th Mountain Division. “There’s a stereotype this makes you soft. No, it brings you on point.”
As commander of the coalition forces in Iraq, Maj. Gen. Walter Piatt juggled ruthless pursuit of enemies and delicate diplomacy with tribal leaders, using a trove of modern weaponry and streams of tech-generated data.

But his best decisions, he said, relied on a tool as ancient as it is powerful. Maj. Gen. Piatt often began daily operations by breathing deliberately, slack-jawed, staring steadily at a palm tree.
read more here

Sunday, February 17, 2019

After veteran committed suicide, Prince Harry and Meghan made promise to Mom

Prince Harry and Meghan promise tragic special forces veteran's mother that they will help servicemen and women win the battle against PTSD

Daily Mail UK
February 17, 2019

Viv Johnston's, 62, special forces son, Danny, 35, killed himself last year
Danny had been struggling with PTSD ever since he was discharged
Harry, 34, had previously written to Viv after Danny was found hanged in May
An estimated 42 servicemen and women committed suicide last year
Viv Johnston, 62, was invited to speak to Prince Harry and Meghan before the Endeavour Awards last week after Harry wrote to her when her son, Danny, killed himself last year
Roughly 42 ex-servicemen and women suffering with PTSD committed suicide last year but the true scale of the crisis isn't known because the Ministry of Defence doesn't keep a record.

Prince Harry and Meghan have made a vow to a grieving mother to help servicemen and women who are struggling with PTSD.

Viv Johnston, 62, saw the destructive effects PTSD can have first hand when her son, Danny Johnston, 35, killed himself last year.

The royal couple invited Viv, from Bognor Regis, West Sussex, to meet them before the military Endeavour Awards in London last week.
read more here

Thursday, February 14, 2019

PTSD UK: more mental health evacuations than physical wounded

Mental health evacuations in the forces

AirMed and Rescue
Wed, 02/06/2019

Military mental health

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) have addressed figures released under the Freedom of Information Act which highlight that one in 10 military personnel evacuations are due to mental health problems.

Over the last year, 121 servicemen and women operating abroad were flown back to the UK as a result of mental health conditions, which include depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and stress. Second only to limb injuries, more people were evacuated for mental health problems than limb disorders, heart problems or spinal injuries.

Personnel evacuated were flown back to the UK to receive medical treatment and had the option to either return to operations abroad or stay in the UK following their treatment. However, figures released omit some instances, such as those where mental health issues were dealt with without the patient returning to the UK, and those of patients travelling on a commercial airline.

Figures taken between October 2017 and September 2018 show that those most likely to be evacuated over mental health are Army personnel, with 69 evacuations throughout the period. The Royal Navy are second most likely, with 35 evacuations, and the Royal Air Force (RAF) had 17 evacuations in the period described. Indeed, the proportion of mental health-related evacuations almost doubled: from 6.3 per cent between 2003 and 2010 to 12.4 per cent between 2017 and 2018. These figures come after a MoD statistical report found in January 2019 that Army personnel were at the highest risk of all three forces of deliberate self-harm during service.
read more here

Monday, February 11, 2019

Female Officer Cadet found dead at Royal Military Academy

Female Officer Cadet found dead in apparent suicide at Sandhurst

The Telegraph UK
Dominic Nicholls, defence and security correspondent
8 FEBRUARY 2019 

A female Officer Cadet has been found dead in an apparent suicide at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, amid reports she was being investigated for a ‘drunken night out’.

The unnamed woman, 21, was found dead in her room on Wednesday Feb 7. It is not known if she was an overseas student or from the UK.

It is understood the woman was involved in an investigation over a drunken party at Sandhurst last weekend, after which she apparently stayed overnight in one of the other colleges on the site on the Berkshire-Surrey border. The MoD said there was no suggestion of wrongdoing, except that she had not returned to her accommodation.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) confirmed an investigation into her death had been launched by Thames Valley Police. It is thought to be the first suicide by a female cadet at the Surrey base.
read more here

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Lance Corporal James Ross committed suicide after being isolated

Why were these troubled soldiers sent to 'isolated' base after horrors of war? Mother's agony that son who lost five comrades in Afghanistan is one of two found hanged in three months

The Daily Mail
Joel Adams and Sophie Law
February 4, 2019
  • Lance Corporal James Ross, 30, was found hanged at Army base in Ballykinler
  • Mother Linda Ketcher questioned why her son was sent to an 'isolated' base
  • She told the inquest how senior Army personnel kept her son's friends away from her at the funeral saying it was 'odd' she was not allowed to have a conversation
  • Darren Mitchell, 20, also died from suspected suicide at base three months later

Lance Corporal James Ross (pictured), 30, from Leeds, was found hanged at Abercorn Army base in Ballykinler on December 8 2012
The mother of a soldier found hanged in a suspected suicide at an isolated barracks, where another solder is suspected to have killed himself months later, has spoken of her agony over his death. 
It comes as a Daily Mail investigation found men from their regiment, which took heavy losses in Helmand, are self-harming and taking their own lives at an alarming rate.
Lance Corporal James Ross, 30, from Leeds, who served in Afghanistan, was found hanged at Abercorn Army base in Ballykinler, Northern Ireland, on December 8 2012.
The inquest into his death, and the death by hanging of Rifleman Darren Mitchell, six weeks later at the same base, opened today.
Mrs Ketcher said that army officials prevented her from speaking to soldiers from the barracks at her son's funeral. 
She said: 'A few of them [his friends from the Army] were visibly upset. 
'If any of the guys who served with him [came to speak to me], within minutes, there would be someone ushering them away from me. read more here

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Recruitment campaign cost $2.6 million...and the Guardsman in poster

Scots Guardsman quits army over controversial ‘snow flakes’ recruitment poster Australia
January 8, 2019

A guardsman says he is planning to quit the army after his picture was used in a controversial $2.6 million ad campaign.

A Scots Guardsman says he is planning to quit the army after his picture was used below the words “snow flake” in a controversial ad campaign.

Stephen McWhirter, 28, slammed the army advertisement posters and told colleagues he was not told his photo would be used in this way.

According to friends, the guardsman, based at Wellington Barracks in Westminster, has been inundated with mocking messages and left open to ridicule, the Daily Mail reported.

The soldier expressed his fury on Facebook while speaking to other troops about the £1.5 million ($A2.68 million) campaign.

One soldier wrote: “Imagine the army taking a photo of you and writing “snow flake” in massive letters above your head. I’d be signed straight off.”

Guardsman McWhirter responded: “Don’t f***ing worry mate, I am.” He added that he would formally submit his resignation as soon as he could.
read more here

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Iraq War veteran Aidan Knight's children receive justice

Aidan Knight, hanged himself after trying to get help from professionals

Daily Mail
Joe Middleton
December 9, 2018

Family of Iraq War veteran, 29, who took his own life after telling his mother he'd seen 'too much death' win six-figure payout from NHS over a catalogue of failings in his care
The family of Aidan Knight (names not given) outside the High Court in London. The family of the former soldier who committed suicide have won a six-figure payout from NHS bosses after they admitted a catalogue of failings in his care

Aidan Knight, hanged himself after trying to get help from professionals
The 29-year-old's three children have been awarded a financial settlement
Lawyers brought a civil action against Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust
He told his mother, Angie Aleksejuk, 55, that he had seen 'too much death'
The family of an Iraq War veteran who took his own life have won a six-figure payout from NHS bosses who admitted a catalogue of failings in his care.

Father-of-three Aidan Knight, who served in Iraq with the elite 2 Para, hanged himself after trying to get help from mental health professionals for months, lawyers representing his family said.

He left the army after five years, telling his mother he had seen 'too much death' and also struggled to cope with the loss of his brother George in 2012.

Between 2014 and 2015, Mr Knight took an overdose in the first of four suicide bids.

Mr Knight's mother Angie Aleksejuk, 55, from Stafford, said: 'I wish that just one person had thought differently in the period leading up to Aidan's death, as if they had he may still be here.
read more here

Saturday, November 17, 2018

UK: Missing battle buddies beer and remembrance

Soldier buys eight pints for comrades who died in Afghanistan and leaves each untouched and decorated with a poppy in poignant Remembrance Day tribute

The unnamed veteran accompanied every beer with a photo showing one of his dead friends, and left them neatly assembled on an empty table surrounded by empty chairs. Both where and when the photo was taken is unclear

Saturday, November 3, 2018

War veteran husband's tragic descent to suicide

Widow demands to be heard after war veteran husband's tragic descent to suicide

ITV News
November 2, 2018

"I tried to get him help, I was trying to save his life and people didn’t work with me." Jo Jukes
For years Jo Jukes lived with a war veteran husband suffering from worsening post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and acute depression - while desperately seeking help for him.

Now she is a widow after Lance Corporal Dave Jukes took his own life in October behind the family's home in Birmingham.

He had been sleeping rough in an alleyway after his volatile behaviour meant his wife had to make the agonising decision of taking out a court order banning him from entering their home.

It was a shocking end to the life of a former infantryman, 49, who had served in almost every major campaign British forces have been involved in over the last 25 years.

"He survived Northern Ireland, Bosnia, two Iraqs, Afghanistan, but his service killed him in the end," Mrs Jukes told ITV News.
read more here

Thursday, October 11, 2018

UK researchers find rise in PTSD among Army Veterans

PTSD among army veterans on the rise finds study

News Medical
Ananya Mandal MD
October 8, 2018

A new study has found that there is a rise of post-traumatic-stress disorder (PTSD) among those who have served the army and military over the past decade. The study reveals that most of the personnel who have been witness to active combat were among those who reported with symptoms of PTSD and 17 percent of these individuals were diagnosed with PTSD.
Image Credit: Emily C. McCormick / Shutterstock
The authors say the lack of support after leaving the army and the natural course of PTSD that manifests much later after the actual events have occurred could be the probable reasons behind these rising instances. The study results were published in the latest issue of the British Journal of Psychiatry.

The study by a team of researchers at the King’s College, London, included around 9,000 veterans and found that there is a rising awareness regarding PTSD and this is caused a rise in number of individuals seeking treatment for this condition. The number of diagnosed cases of PTSD was 4 percent in 2004-05 and it has risen to 6 percent in 2014-16 finds the study. The incidence of PTSD was 17 percent among those who were engaged in active combat roles in Afghanistan or Iraq and 6 percent of the cases were seen among those who were engaged in supporting roles such as aircrew and medical personnel at the battlefields.

According to lead author, Dr Sharon Stevelink, from the Institute of Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience (IoPPN) at King's College, this is the first study that shows that the veterans who have been deployed in combat roles are at great risk of PTSD and these numbers are greater than those who are still serving. She said that one in three of the veterans have been engaged in active combat.

This study, Stevelink explained is the third phase of a major study that began since 2003. This phase looked at veterans in 2014 to 2016 and found that 62 percent of these persons were deployed to Afghanistan or Iraq and were of an average age of around 40 years. Anxiety and depressive illness rates were around 22 percent among these veterans found the study and the authors noted that alcohol abuse reduced from 15 percent to 10 percent over these years.
read more here

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Sgt. Major accused of hoping PTSD veteran would die of AIDS

Army major probed after Facebook message told soldier with PTSD to 'die from AIDS'
The Mirror UK
BySean Rayment
6 OCT 2018

EXCLUSIVE: Rob Walker is now being investigated after the shock message was sent
Rob Walker is being investigated (Image: Western Mail)

A message from an Army sergeant major’s Facebook account said he hoped a soldier discharged with PTSD would die from AIDS.

The comments from Rob Walker’s social media are being investigated by the Royal Military Police and he could face a court martial if he sent the message.

Walker, a Company Sergeant Major in First Battalion, the Royal Irish Regiment, served in conflict with the PTSD sufferer in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The message also accused the ex-soldier of sleeping with a 10-year-old Filipino boy.
read more here

Sunday, August 12, 2018

UK Veteran Dumped After Duty Died

Why are NATO Defense leaders making our jobs impossible? After decades of endless hours working to get them to overcome the stigma of PTSD, advocates have been showing them how much hope there is in healing, veterans continue to be dumped after duty!

We tell them to ask for help in this battle the same way they asked for help to do their duties in combat. We tell them the same people who would have died for them in combat, will listen to them now.

We tell them everything they need to hear but cannot say their government will be there for them too!

Mum who found dead body of soldier son who served in Afghanistan says Army “can’t be bothered” to help men like him
The Mirror UK
Sean Rayment
August 11, 2108
Kevin Holt, a former member of the 2nd Battalion, was discovered dead by his mother Shirley – who said the Army “can’t be bothered” to help men like him
Shirley Parker Holt with the shrine to the son she buried last Friday (Image: John Gladwin/Sunday Mirror)

The regiment with the highest Afghan war casualty toll is still suffering losses as its heroes battle demons in civilian life.

The Rifles lost 55 dead and 252 wounded serving on the front line but its mentally traumatised veterans continue to die young.

A fortnight ago Kevin Holt, a former member of the 2nd Battalion who had always dreamed of being a soldier, was discovered dead at 29 by his mum Shirley – who said the Army “can’t be bothered” to help men like him.

Kevin’s death a fortnight ago, after nearly a decade of struggling with post traumatic stress disorder, remains a mystery.

But this year alone at least six men who served in the Rifles have taken their own lives, including one in the past week.

Cleaner Shirley, who found Kevin’s body in the caravan he used as his home, said he never got over what he had witnessed in Afghanistan.
Shirley insisted aftercare had been totally lacking, saying: “It was like the Army couldn’t wait to get rid of him. As soon as he was diagnosed everything stopped and he was told he was going to be discharged.

“That was it – no help, no counseling, nothing. He even had to wait four years for a pension.
read more here

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Veteran lost legs serving UK, then lost wheelchair

Ben lost his legs for his country, how could they take away his wheelchair?
Daily Mail
By Mark Nicol Defence Correspondent For The Mail On Sunday
17 March 2018

‘We cannot suffer in silence any longer. We need a long-term care plan in place for Ben now.’

The most seriously injured British soldier sues MoD after pay cut and lack of care
Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson, 33, lost both of his legs while in Afghanistan
Former paratrooper wasn't expected to survive explosion in Helmand Province
Now he is suing the MoD for not provided care for him and for cutting his wages
The most seriously wounded British soldier from the war in Afghanistan is to sue the Army after claiming that defence chiefs cut his pay, put vital medical treatment in jeopardy – and failed to provide him with wheelchairs.

Lance Bombardier Ben Parkinson, 33, who suffered devastating injuries when he was blown up by the Taliban, is to bring the legal action after what his family last night described as years of broken promises and ‘deception’ by top brass over his care.

The former paratrooper was not expected to survive after losing both legs and suffering brain damage when his Land Rover hit an anti-tank mine in Helmand Province in 2006. His recovery, which has included learning to walk and talk again, has astounded doctors.
Mr Parkinson (pictured before the explosion) lost both his legs and sustained grievous damage to his spine, skull, pelvis, hands, spleen and ribcage, leaving him in a coma for months
He was allowed to stay in uniform and has been held up as an example of the Army’s commitment to wounded troops.

But today The Mail on Sunday can reveal the shocking story of Ben’s struggle for basic equipment and specialist care. Now, his furious family is suing the Ministry of Defence for Breach of Statutory Care.

As a serving soldier, Ben is not allowed to talk to the media. Speaking on his behalf, his mother Diane Dernie, 60, said: ‘Under an agreement reached with us and the NHS in 2016, the MoD is supposed to provide Ben’s wheelchairs, prosthetic limbs and specialist medical services not available to us locally on the NHS.

‘We have learned, contrary to what the Army has told us, that charities have provided two of Ben’s wheelchairs from funds donated by the public. This was a deception on their part.
read more here