Like you, I've been watching the situation in Afghanistan over the past 48 hours. If you deployed to Afghanistan, you may feel right now like you've somehow 'failed.' I want to assure you that nothing is further from the truth. The Vermonters who deployed to Afghanistan served with honor and distinction: our military members execute the mission they are given, no matter how challenging. You did your job and no one will ever take that away from you.
For our Service Members who gave their lives in Afghanistan, and those impacted over the 20 years of our time there, please continue to hold them and their families in our hearts.
If you or someone you know is struggling, I encourage you to reach out. Talk to me directly; talk to a mental health specialist, a battle buddy, a commander, or a first sergeant. We have resources available to you at www.vtguard.com/suicide-prevention.
Here are just a few stories of our work from 2010, if you would like to take a moment to remember with me:
Vermont Guard Soldiers jump right into their mission
Gov. Douglas visits troops, raises Vermont battle flag
Vermont National Guard unit creates relationship with school in Kabul
Vermont Guard unit adjusts to changing mission
Stay in the arena. You make a difference.