Delayed casualties


What always struck me about this iconic Iraq War photograph (2004) of Sgt. Theresa Flannery was the entirely different expressions on her face from those of her colleagues (click the image for a larger version).

She and other U.S. soldiers were trapped on a roof in Najaf when militiamen attacked. “A bullet meant for her struck one of her companions. She helped to care for the wounded, and their blood soaked her clothing,” McClatchy News reported.

She died in her sleep a few days ago. Her father is convinced it’s the result of the war:

She had nightmares, he said, and she went through periods of deep depression. Memories of Iraq could send her into tears. Her father said she was invited to speak at a military memorial event in Richmond, Ky., a few years ago, but she became too emotional to finish her speech.

“There were a lot of ups and downs,” he said. “They would put her on some drug for a few months and it would help. Then, it would stop working and they would switch to another drug. It was really hard for her, particularly trying to raise her son.”

  • Very sad… thanks for sharing.

  • Lily

    My sympathy to her family. She certainly suffered in so many ways. War can affect the brain in ways we are only beginning to understand.