Showing posts with label burn wounds. Show all posts
Showing posts with label burn wounds. Show all posts

Thursday, April 11, 2019

Crooks robbed Vietnam Veteran while he was in coma

update Suspects Arrested 

BOSTON (CBS) – A man and woman charged with burglarizing the home of a Vietnam veteran while he was fighting for his life in the hospital claimed they needed money so one of their dogs could have surgery.

Police said 35-year-old Joseph Migliaccio, of Woonsocket, R.I. and 31-year-old Sarah Hampton, of Sudbury, burglarized the home three times over the weekend. They broke into the house in broad daylight, authorities say, while the veteran, Gene Rano, is fighting for his life in the hospital.

Boston 25 News
By: Heather Hegedus
Apr 11, 2019
Rano's son says he thinks he has seen the pair in his father's home socializing with him and he tells Boston 25 News he feels disgusted they may have preyed on the home knowing Rano was in the hospital.

MARLBOROUGH, Mass. - Two people have been arrested after Marlborough Police say surveillance video showed them breaking into a house while a Vietnam veteran was in the hospital fighting for his life.

Last week, 68-year-old Gene Rano was hospitalized after suffering serious burns to more than 40% of his body while burning brush near his home.

Rano is currently in a coma at Massachusetts General Hospital after doctors amputated both of his legs.
read more here

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Quadruple Amputee Will Leave You Speechless

Wheelchair-bound man cutting grass an inspiration for Weslaco and beyond
Oscar Margain
December 23, 2017
“God gave me the biggest blessing I could ever ask for,” he said. The Ayala name is still going on. You know, it doesn't stop with me.”
WESLACO, TEXAS - Mowing the lawn under 80-degree December weather would seem like a breeze. Not so fast. What may look like a simple chore for Rene Ayala is much more.

“I like to face adversity and hit it head on,” he said. “You’re not going to tell me I can’t do it.”

The 45-year-old Weslaco resident is often seen on his 10-acre property pulling, rather than pushing, a lawnmower.
Ayala said he’s never asked strangers for help. Even after losing his limbs and suffering severe burns in an apartment fire 22 years ago.
read more here

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Iraq Veteran Motivates Thanks To Angels

Burned in Iraq, veteran motivates with humor, runs to raise funds
Sebastian Robertson
October 27, 2017

"There's not a day that goes by that I don't think about my angels and their life that I can't waste today." Bobby Henline
BEDFORD - Bobby Henline will be the first to tell you that he should've died in Iraq in 2007.

“I was burnt over 38 percent of my body," Henline said. "Doctors said there's no medical explanation for why I'm alive."

Ten years ago, the Humvee Henline was riding in hit a roadside bomb. The blast from the explosion killed four other men inside inside the vehicle and left Henline severely burned. It was his fourth tour in Iraq, his thirteenth year in the military.

"If I was one of the guys that didn't make it, what I want for the guy that did, of course I would want them to live the life to the fullest," Henline said.

For the last decade, the father of four has tried to find out how to do that.
"I've got to teach them the burn survivor wave," Henline said as he waved both arms above his head. "It's like when you buy a Jeep you learn the Jeep wave. The day you get burned, you learn the burn wave. It's like, 'ahhh!'"
read more here

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Vietnam Veteran Delivers Hope to High School Students

Scars and Stripes: Vietnam veteran spreads inspirational message to Oakwood student
WDTN 2 News
Kelly King
October 19, 2017

Roever admits there were times he thought of taking his own life, but he shared a message of hope.“I’m here to tell you today suicide is not the solution,” stressed Roever.

OAKWOOD, Ohio (WDTN) — A Vietnam veteran burned beyond recognition fighting for our country is making it his mission to tell his story of survival and inspire others.

Dave Roever was at Oakwood High School Thursday speaking to an auditorium full of students.

“Never let a good scar go to waste,” Roever told the crowd.

His story tugged at heartstrings as he recounted the day he left his wife for the war.

“She said are you coming back? That’s when I made that promise I couldn’t keep. I said ‘I’ll be back without a scar.'”
read more here

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Inspirational Vietnam Veteran Plans On Surviving Again After Being Set on Fire At Denny's

Vietnam Veteran Is Determined To Survive After Being Set On Fire

Christe Lattimore-Staple 
August 14, 2017

Nearly four months after he was doused with gasoline and lit on fire at a Happy Valley, Oregon Denny’s, walking remains a goal for Scott Ranstrom.

“I’m trying to take steps,” he said.

The 69-year-old Vietnam veteran didn’t know his attacker.

He doesn’t like to think about him.

“Every morning I get up with expectations of tomorrow, not what happened,” said Ranstrom, his hands covered by protective gloves.

Sitting in a private room in Vibra Specialty Hospital, a recovery center for those who need long-term, in-patient care, Ranstrom is unwavering.

He remembers everything.
read more here

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Stunning, Sexy, Nude Veterans

Amputee Veterans Reveal Why They Showed Off Their Battle Scars in Latest Nude Photo Shoot
Inside Edition
by Johanna
August 2, 2016

These sexy veterans are back, and they're wearing nothing but their battle scars.

Just when our hearts and loins thought they've had enough, photographer Michael Stokes of Los Angeles is back behind the lens shooting amputees in a steamy sequel to his wounded veteran series, and he guarantees: "Yes, they are nude."

Stokes said he reached out to 13 new veterans to be featured in Invictus, and revisited five models he photographed for his first book, Always Loyal.

Of the 18 veterans he photographed for his series on battle scars, 17 are amputees.
read more here 

Read: Go Behind the Scenes as Naked Wounded War Veterans Pose for Steamy Photos

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Retired Colonel Meets the Man Whose Life He Helped Save on 9-11

Nearly 15 Years After 9/11, Retired Colonel Meets the Man Whose Life He Helped Save

"When I realized that I was looking at the same gentleman, I started to cry and told him I was so grateful that he was still alive," Maness tells PEOPLE. "We hugged each other and neither of us could believe that we were talking again. What are the odds?"
Medical personnel load wounded Pentagon worker into an ambulance outside the Pentagon on September 11, 2001
Every day for almost 15 years, Col. Rob Maness wondered about the badly-burned man he'd tried to keep conscious on a gurney after terrorists flew a 757 airliner into the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001.

Did he make it? Was he still alive? Was he able to fully recover and live a happy and fulfilling life?

"It's something I've always thought about, but I never had an answer," Maness, 54, now living in Madisonville, Louisiana, and running for the U.S. Senate as a Republican, tells PEOPLE. "It was always a mystery."

Until now.
read more here

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Iraq Veteran Bobby Henline Has Big Dreams and Burgers Too

Wounded Veteran Hopes to Inspire By Opening Restaurant, Hiring Vets
Epoch Times
By Sherley Boursiquot
June 22, 2016
Richard Brown, a Korean war vet and founder of Biggie’s Great Burgers and Shakes. Henlin shared his dream with Brown and said he wanted to partner up with Biggie’s, simply because he loves burgers, he said.

Bobby Henline

Bobby Henline nearly lost his life fighting for his country.

He deployed to Iraq three times with the 82nd Airborne Division and the 3rd Armored Calvary regiment.

Three weeks into his fourth tour in Iraq—on April 7, 2007—Henline’s Humvee was blown up by a roadside bomb. He was the only survivor of five soldiers.

Henline was burned over 38 percent of his body; he spent 6 months in the hospital and was in an induced coma for about 3 weeks.

He had no ears, no eyelids, and some of his teeth were missing.

His left hand was eventually amputated, and he underwent therapy for 2 years. He has had 47 surgeries to date.

“I’m a wounded vet,” Henline, 44, said.

Wounded, yes, but he did not stop living—thanks largely to an occupational therapist who persuaded him to use his clever sense of humor to do stand-up comedy.

“Joking is how I dealt with everything,” Henline said. He has now been doing stand-up comedy and motivational speaking for 7 years.
read more here

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Marine Changed by War, Changed by Disrespect, Changed Again by Love

This shows the difference love, respect and appreciation can make. A 20 year old had been sent to Iraq. An IED blew up leaving him with a visible price tag for the Independence bought by those who risked their lives to retain it. He came home and was shown disrespect back then but as you'll see, nothing ended for this veteran and his family.

Disfigured veteran deals with disrespect at home
Gregg Zoroya and Alan Gomez
April 25, 2013

BELTSVILLE, MD. — Six years have passed since a roadside bomb set Ronny "Tony" Porta on fire in Iraq when he was 20, and he's still trying to find his way home. Each reflection in the mirror bears witness to why that is not easy.
Marine Cpl. Ronny Porta was severely burned in May 2007 in Al Asad, Iraq, when his Humvee hit an improvised explosive device. Two other Marines died in the attack. (Photo: Jack Gruber, USA TODAY)
Every stranger who points or stares, every teenager who mocks with the word "monster" or couple that whisper behind his back that the disfigurement is the price for invading a country, tells Porta he hasn't quite left the battlefield behind.

"This is home for me," says Porta, 26, who grew up in suburban-Washington Beltsville after his family emigrated from Peru. "But sometimes, it's kind of hard saying, 'I am home.'"

Two months ago, a man approached Porta in a Home Depot. He stood studying the burns on Porta's face and asked if a car accident was to blame. Porta, wearing a Marine Corps sweatshirt, said, no, it was an IED explosion in Iraq.

What really stuck with Porta and angers him still were the words the man said next: "Was it worth it?" Is it so difficult, Porta asks, to see that those who volunteer in defense of the nation know it can carry a price? "Freedom is not free," he says, echoing an age-old American refrain.
read more here

Disfigured by war, veteran now says 'I found my place'
Gregg Zoroya
July 3, 2015

LOVETTSVILLE, Va. — Ronny "Tony" Porta was searching for a place where people could see past the disfigurement left by war, where cruel mutterings about his appearance or unfeeling questions about whether such wounds were "worth it" did not exist.

More than two years later, Porta says, "I found my place."

Porta, 28, a medically retired Marine corporal, stumbled upon this northernmost Virginia village in the windy, rolling countryside 55 miles from the nation's capital nearly two years ago. His head, face and much of his body were horribly scarred by a fiery roadside bomb attack in Iraq in 2007 that killed two other Marines. He lost his right arm and was left with only a few gnarled fingers on his left hand.

But in Lovettsville, Porta has been embraced without reservation.

The pinnacle of acceptance comes this Fourth of July weekend as Porta, his wife, son and mother settle into a state-of-the-art "smart" home built by grateful donors on a hill just outside the town limits. "I found the place where I want to spend the rest of my life," he said Wednesday as he watched the finishing touches put to his new home.

A town procession of a color guard, motorcycle escort and local dignitaries formally delivered Porta and his family to the doorstep of his new house Friday from another he's rented in Lovettsville since 2013. "It's become obviously a major event," said Mike Chapman, sheriff of surrounding Loudoun County, who plans to ride his motorcycle. "Everybody jumped on board."
read more here

Monday, January 19, 2015

Combat Wounded Staff Sgt. Tavera Retired From Army

Wounded vet given several standing ovations in retirement sendoff 
Tampa Bay Times
Rich Shopes Times
Staff Writer
Friday, January 16, 2015
Retired Army Lt. Gen. Susan Lawrence gave a tribute Friday to Staff Sgt. Joel Tavera, here with his parents, Maritza and Jose Tavera. Joel Tavera was badly injured in a rocket attack. Rich Shopes, Times

TAMPA — Joel Tavera was five months into his deployment in Iraq when a rocket ripped into the vehicle he was riding in, killing everyone except Tavera and another soldier.

Burns covered 60 percent of Tavera's body. Exploding shrapnel and the blast's concussion left him with severe brain trauma that took his sight. His right leg was amputated below the knee. He lost several fingers. Doctors weren't sure he'd survive the trip to a hospital in San Antonio.

"Against all odds he recovered from injuries that most people wouldn't have survived from," said Dr. Steven Scott, who specializes in traumatic brain injuries at the James A. Haley Veterans Hospital in Tampa.

Enduring more than 75 surgeries, Tavera, 27, became an inspiration to other wounded vets, as well as doctors, nurses and just about anyone he encountered.

"He's one of the most positive people you'll ever meet," said Taylor Urruela, a former Army sergeant who lost his right leg to an improvised explosive device in 2006. "And it comes through right away, as soon as you meet him."

On Friday, Staff Sgt. Tavera officially retired from the Army. The Army, in turn, wasn't about to let Tavera go quietly. Top brass organized a send off at Haley replete with commendations, letters of proclamation, including one from President Obama, and more than a few heartfelt tributes.
read more here

Monday, December 8, 2014

Florida: Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn Cashe Actions Worthy of Medal of Honor

Medal of Honor campaign continues for sergeant who saved troops in Iraq
Los Angeles Times
By David Zucchino
Published: December 7, 2014

Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn Cashe
LOS ANGELES (Tribune News Service) — If he had known in 2005 what he knows today, Brig. Gen. Gary Brito would have nominated Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn Cashe for the Medal of Honor.

Brito knew in 2005 that Cashe, his uniform soaked with fuel, had plunged into a burning vehicle in Iraq on Oct. 17, 2005, to rescue soldiers who were on fire. But only months later did Brito, Cashe's battalion commander, learn the full details of Cashe's courage that day outside the city of Samarra.

Cashe rescued six badly burned soldiers while under enemy small-arms fire. His own uniform caught fire, engulfing him in flames. Even with second- and-third degree burns over three-fourths of his body, Cashe continue to pull soldiers out of a vehicle set ablaze when a roadside bomb ruptured a fuel tank.

Before all of those details emerged, Cashe was awarded a Silver Star, the military's third-highest award for valor, after Brito nominated him. But soon after learning more about Cashe's actions, Brito mounted an unusual Medal of Honor campaign that has continued for more than seven years.

If the latest batch of sworn statements submitted to the Army by Brito is successful, Cashe will become the first African American among 16 service members awarded the nation's highest medal for valor for actions in Iraq or Afghanistan. Cashe, 35, died of his burns three weeks after the bomb attack. Seven of the 16 medals have been awarded posthumously.

"You don't often find truly selfless sacrifice where someone put his soldiers' welfare before his own," Brito said. "Sgt. Cashe was horribly wounded and continued to fight to save his men."
read more here

Article from Orlando Sentinel in July
Friends, family gather as Army names Reserve Center after fallen hero
By Susan Jacobson
Orlando Sentinel
Published: July 20, 2014

SANFORD, Fla. — Gary Mills owes his life to the late Army Sgt. 1st Class Alwyn C. Cashe.

Mills was one of half a dozen soldiers whom Cashe pulled from a burning Bradley Fighting Vehicle after a roadside bomb hit it in Iraq on Oct. 17, 2005.

Badly burned over most of his body, Cashe died Nov. 9, 2005.

But his name will live on in Sanford, where Mills joined dozens of Cashe's fellow soldiers, friends, family and dignitaries at a ceremony Saturday naming the new U.S. Army Reserve Center after the fallen hero.

"It's long overdue," Mills, 34, of Jacksonville said of the recognition.

On the lawn of the 31,030-square-foot training building near Orlando Sanford International Airport, speakers praised Cashe's bravery, selflessness and dedication and read proclamations from Gov. Rick Scott and Sanford Mayor Jeff Triplett recognizing Cashe's sacrifice.

Representatives of Sens. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., and Marco Rubio, R-Fla., and U.S. Rep. Corrine Brown, D-Jacksonville, also paid their respects.

Two of Cashe's brothers and a sister -- he comes from a blended family of 18 siblings -- spoke of his impeccable character and remembered his love of hunting and fishing.

Cashe joined the Army immediately after graduating from Oviedo High School in 1988. He had deployed to Iraq once before during Operation Iraqi Freedom and had previously served in Bosnia and the first Gulf War.

When he died at 35, Cashe left a wife and three children in addition to his mother, siblings and a large extended family.
read more here

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Iraq Veteran Gets Beard Transplant After Burn Wounds

'I want to look normal': Army vet whose facial hair was burned off by a roadside bomb gets a beard for the first time in 10 years after transplant
Joseph Jones lost his facial follicles in 2004 when he was injured in by roadside bomb in Iraq
Jones had his procedure covered by the little known Faces of Honor program for vets from the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
More than 3,000 follicles were transplanted to Jones' face over the eight-hour procedure
Process will restore Jones' eyebrows and beard
Daily Mail
2 September 2014

Dr. Jeffrey Epstein marks Army vet Joseph Jones on the areas he plans to transplant new hair follicles where Jones was injured in combat

For the first time in more than a decade, Army veteran Joseph Jones was able to recognize bits of his old face in the mirror following a eight-hour procedure to repair damage to his face sustained by a roadside bomb.

Over the course of the surgery, performed in South Miami, roughly 3,000 follicles were transplanted from to Jones' face, returning the beard and eyebrows he had before the explosion that burned them away while serving in the Iraq war.

Jones was the beneficiary of Faces of Honor program, an initiative from the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery to help Iraq and Afghanistan veterans.
read more here

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

J. R. Martinez all smiles with donation to Operation Finally Home

Dancing with the Stars Champ, Iraq War Vet J.R. Martinez and Operation Finally Home Moved by Wall Street Rocks' Donation to Help Wounded and Disabled Vets
Latin Post
By Melissa Castellanos
April 16, 2014
Dancing with the Stars Season 13 champion, U.S. Army veteran, actor, motivational speaker and best-selling author J.R. Martinez receives a $50,000 check from Wall Street Walks on behalf of Operation Finally Home.
(Photo : Sunny Norton)

Former Iraq War veteran-turned actor and Dancing with the Stars Season 13 champion, J.R. Martinez has wowed audiences with his slick dance moves alongside Karina Smirnoff, acting roles on ABC's All My Children, Lifetime's Army Wives to the nationally syndicated drama series, SAF3.

He's even nabbed the cover of People Magazine, been featured in their Sexiest Man Alive issue and one of the magazine's 25 Most Intriguing People of 2011.

But there's so much more to him than the spotlight he's received in Hollywood.

Like the Dancing with the Star's mirror ball trophy, there are flickers of light that have reflected off his onscreen success, transcending into incredible opportunities that help fellow wounded and disabled vets and burn victims like himself, who are in desperate need of financial and emotional support.
read more here

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Severely Burned Marine Finds Strength In Nascent Marriage

Severely Burned Marine Finds Strength In Nascent Marriage
November 09, 2013

Jessica and Anthony Villarreal in December 2011, more than three years after the explosion that severely burned Anthony in Afghanistan.
Jessica and Anthony at their first Marine Corps Ball in November 2007.
In June 2008, Marine Cpl. Anthony Villarreal was driving back from a mission in Afghanistan when his truck was hit by a roadside bomb. He was 22 at the time and recently married to Jessica, who was just 21.
Villarreal suffered third-degree burns over most of his face and body and was very severely disfigured. His right arm and the fingers on his left hand eventually had to be amputated.

"I remember trying to breathe. I just felt, like, real hot — like I was on fire. They were dragging me on the sand and there was rocks there ... and it hurt, but I couldn't scream," he says. "And so I remember just laying there, feeling the hot sun and then feeling the wind from the helicopter coming in. And the doctor said, 'You'll be home soon.' "

Back home in Texas, the doctors asked Jessica Villarreal to identify her husband, as if he "had died or something." Jessica could only see Anthony's eyes and lips, since he was covered in bandages.
read more here

Sunday, October 27, 2013

UK Military family stays strong with love

War hero burned in Afghanistan: 'Birthmark threatened to disfigure my newborn baby's face'
The Mirror UK
By Sarah Arnold
27 Oct 2013

Martyn Compton was horrifically injured by a Taliban bomb seven years ago and has endured an incredible 500 operations

Lance Corporal Martyn Compton has suffered more than most people could ever imagine.

Seven years ago he was horrifically injured by a Taliban bomb. Since then he has endured an incredible 500 operations.

Four years ago, he and his wife Michelle – who has remained steadfastly at his side throughout his terrible ordeal – thought they had finally turned a corner when they were happily anticipating the birth of twins.

But, tragically, it was not to be. Michelle went into labour at 22 weeks pregnant and lost the babies they had so longed for.

The following year, they finally started a family when their son Archie, now three, was born.

And when last year Michelle gave birth to their baby girl Coral, they felt that at last their life was complete.

But just a week later their happiness turned to dismay as a ruby birthmark began to appear on Coral’s face.

It ­threatened to close her eye and led to part of her lip being damaged.

Martyn said: “Coral was born perfect. A few hours later I noticed what looked like a bruise on her head.

"A few days later the birthmark appeared and started to rapidly spread. I have just endured my 500th operation.

"The thought of my beautiful baby girl going through any of the pain I’ve suffered was unbearable.

“Our initial reaction was, ‘Why us?’ after everything we’d already gone through.

"But then Michelle said, ‘She’s a fighter just like her daddy so she’ll pull through’. And thankfully it’s looking like she will.”
read more here

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Wounded Soldier feels the love from 350 San Antonio blood donors

Soldier receives rare blood type after center seeks help
by Kens 5 Staff
September 18, 2013

SAN ANTONIO --A wounded soldier with a rare blood type received more than enough blood thanks to the San Antonio community.

The 22-year-old soldier, who did not want to be named, is being treated at Fort Sam Houston after an IED blast in Afghanistan left him with severe burns.
read more here

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Veteran Marine of Gulf War and Iraq battled to make it out of his own backyard

Veteran fights for his life after burning 65% of body
ABC News Charleston
By Stacy Jacobson
Posted: Jul 19, 2013

FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCIV) -- The Folly Beach Shrimp Company will have a fundraiser on Saturday to help a national hero -- he's a man who's survived three tours of duty in Iraq and is now fighting for his life.

SSgt. Harold Veronda faced some of the most dangerous missions possible.

"He was an explosives screener and he was also a sniper," said his friend Dan.

The Marine Corps veteran served the U.S. during the Gulf War. And when the War in Iraq started a decade later, Veronda volunteered.

He has led many on potentially deadly tasks.

"He brought a lot of people out alive and back to their families in the process of serving our country," Dan said.

But sometimes we are tested when we least expect it.

"It's just kind of ironic," Dan said.

Veronda was doing yard work on June 2. He went to remove a tree stump when a tool backfired and fuel exploded all over him. The explosives expert found himself on fire. He battled to make it out of his own backyard.

"He was able to put the flames out, picked up a cell phone, dialed his wife, asked her to get help, walked in to the house, took clothes off, walk to the back of the house and get in the shower," Dan said.
read more here

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Soldier's beauty inside and out after Afghanistan deployment

Soldier’s Childhood Tragedy Leads to Own Beauty Business
ABC News

HOUSTON–U.S. Army veteran Nicole Baldwin, 28, was 4 years old when she was severely burned. She was trying to surprise her grandmother Mary by making her a cup of tea when hot water poured onto her face, neck and chest leaving her with burns.

“It was embarrassing as a kid because kids are brutally honest and they’ll ask me, or what happened to you?” she says. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, every day, 435 children ages 0 to 19 are treated in emergency rooms for burn-related injuries.

This tragic incident would later become Baldwin’s motivation to launch her own skincare company.

While receiving treatment at the hospital, her nurse grandmother used home remedies to help Baldwin’s scars to heal. “She would come home from work and she would massage this formula on my skin and it virtually helped heal all the scaring,” she says.

During her deployment in Afghanistan, Baldwin thought about her grandmother’s homemade herbal remedies and she started thinking about creating her own. “It was in Afghanistan, that my skin began to shift due to the heat, dust, dirt, stress, all of those factors played on the health of my skin,” she says. In 2010, Baldwin decided to follow her grandmother’s footsteps and her dream, and launched BIOA Beauty Skincare – Beauty Inside and Out. “I started to think about my grandmother’s formulation and I thought to myself…if I could get my grandmothers’ formulation to do exactly what it did for my skin, then I might be on to something,” she says.
read more here

Friday, April 26, 2013

Disfigured veteran deals with disrespect at home

Disfigured veteran deals with disrespect at home
Gregg Zoroya and Alan Gomez
April 25, 2013

Ronny Porta feeds his son, Kenneth, breakfast in his parents' Maryland home. Jack Gruber, USA TODAY

BELTSVILLE, MD. — Six years have passed since a roadside bomb set Ronny "Tony" Porta on fire in Iraq when he was 20, and he's still trying to find his way home.

Each reflection in the mirror bears witness to why that is not easy.

Every stranger who points or stares, every teenager who mocks with the word "monster" or couple that whisper behind his back that the disfigurement is the price for invading a country, tells Porta he hasn't quite left the battlefield behind.

"This is home for me," says Porta, 26, who grew up in suburban-Washington Beltsville after his family emigrated from Peru. "But sometimes, it's kind of hard saying, 'I am home.'"

Two months ago, a man approached Porta in a Home Depot. He stood studying the burns on Porta's face and asked if a car accident was to blame. Porta, wearing a Marine Corps sweatshirt, said, no, it was an IED explosion in Iraq.
read more here

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Sailors' uniforms highly flammable and will melt

Navy uniforms are flammable, and the military knows it
The Virginian-Pilot
Published: January 9, 2013

NORFOLK, Va. — The Navy's standard-issue blue camouflage uniforms are highly flammable and will melt onto the skin when burning, a recent Navy test revealed.

A second revelation: This comes as no surprise to the Navy.

"We knew when we designed this uniform that it wasn't flame-resistant," said Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Navy's top spokesman.

"When we were making the uniform, sailors wanted a uniform that was comfortable, that didn't require maintenance and would stand up under a lot of washing, and one of the ways to get that is a nylon-cotton blend," Kirby said. "We realize that nylon does not react well to flame, but again, there was no requirement for a fire-resistant uniform in a working environment."

The Navy released findings in December of an impromptu test that showed that - unlike the Army and Marine Corps working uniforms - its working uniform is not designated flame-resistant and "when subjected to a flame, it will burn robustly until completely consumed."
read more here