PTSD in the spotlight at White House Medal of Honor ceremony

August 26, 2013

The struggles faced by many veterans and servicemembers in coping with post-traumatic stress took center stage at the White House on Monday as President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor to Army Staff Sgt. Ty M. Carter.


Carolyn Kaster/AP – President Obama awards Army Staff Sgt. Ty M. Carter the Medal of Honor for conspicuous gallantry during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House on Monday.

Carter, who was awarded the medal for actions in a 2009 battle in eastern Afghanistan in which nine American soldiers were killed, has spoken publicly about dealing with the PTSD he has suffered since the experience.

In his remarks, Obama said it was “absolutely critical. . . to put an end to any stigma” that prevents troops from getting treatment for PTSD.

“No one should ever die waiting for the mental health care they need,” Obama added, referring to Spec. Edward W. Faulkner Jr., a survivor of the battle who also struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder, and killed himself less than a year after the attack.

In an article Saturday, The Washington Post told the story of Daniel Somers, an Army veteran of Iraq who felt frustrated in his attempts to get mental health care from the Department of Veterans Affairs and killed himself in June

Steve Vogel is a reporter for the national staff of The Washington Post who covers the federal government and frequently writes about the military and veterans.
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Eric Yoder | August 26, 2013