Thursday, February 23, 2012

Corporal James M. Dixon III, survived 3 tours in Iraq, passed away at home

Some will read this and not notice what a powerful obituary this is.

Corporal James M. Dixon III, 30 of Baxley, Ga. died Sunday, February 19, 2012 at his residence from events related to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder received while serving his country in the U.S. Marine Corps with 3 tours in Iraq. He was a Purple Heart Recipient in addition to the Combat Action Ribbon, Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal, Meritorious Mast, Navy Unit Commendation, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Certificate of Commendation, Iraq Campaign Medal, National Defense Medal, and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon. He graduated from Appling County High School in the top 3 in his class and went on to Georgia Southern University to receive a Masters Degree in Business Administration. He enjoyed his friends, dog, nieces and military family.

This family lost someone they loved, but also someone they were proud of and unashamed to address Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. That's powerful. 30 years ago when I got into all of this, no one was talking about PTSD, as if there was anything to be ashamed of. We've come this far from there and it is a wonderful thing. Combat PTSD is nothing to be ashamed of!

Someone sent this in an email and it is very moving.

Here's the story on what happened

Another Marine Iraq Veteran with PTSD shot by SWAT team


  1. Thank you for posting this, Corporal Dixon was a childhood friend. I can honestly say the funeral today was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen. Thank you for bringing the horrors of PTSD to light.

  2. My husband, a Vietnam veteran has PTSD and that's how I got into all of this so long ago. His nephew, also served in Vietnam, came home with PTSD but he lost his battle with it. I nearly lost my husband but he's still here and living a fairly good life.
    Most of these years, PTSD was like some huge secret people felt they needed to keep so anyone talking about it openly are heroes to me. I pray for his family and you.

  3. A huge, heartfelt thank you to your husband and nephew! We train these young men to go to war, but we don't train them to re-enter society. God bless you and your family!

    1. You are exactly right. It is as if we're just expecting them to just get over it never thinking about how they have to train to leave.

  4. Most of you keep talking about James and the fact that he suffered from PTSD as though he and PTSD were the culprits that caused his death. You fail to mention that the Georgia Highway Patrol Swat team shot him down simply because James failed to obey their commands. James was not threatening anyone nor pointing the gun he held at anyone.
    I am a veteran. In my view James was murdered by macho law enforcement officers who had no concern for James.
    It is my hope that the governor of Georgia will conduct a through investigation of this sad event and punish those in law enforcement who deserve punishment.
    Gerald Matacale, U S Navy Veteran.

    1. The point of this post is to show that this family put PTSD in the obituary. Do you know how many people still think PTSD is something to be ashamed of? It used to be so bad that when I got into all of this, I couldn't use my married name. I had to write under Kathie Costos. I wrote a book about living with PTSD and my Vietnam vet husband under Kathie Costos because back then, no one wanted to talk about it. This family has done a lot to save other veterans just by addressing PTSD openly.

      I do have the story behind his death on this blog.

      I posted it, just like too many before this, to show that communities across this country need to do a lot more to help our veterans come home all the way. Many years ago, I had to turn to the police for help with my husband. I went down to the station and found a Sgt. on duty that was a Vietnam Vet as well. My husband was only a danger to himself at the time. They came and were very kind to him and got him to the hospital. That was over 20 years ago but it shows that when police understand PTSD and combat, things can end well. Unfortunately, too often they end up the way they ended James' life.

  5. Video tribute of James.

  6. James was my cousin. He was such a sweet and loving man. I am a woman marine vet. My late husband served in Viet Nam at the age of 17. He could not overcome the death and destruction that he saw. At age of 42 he drank himself to death. He as well as James could not let go of what they saw. I tried to talk James out of going in because I knew what he would endure after boot camp. He was a wonderful young man. The police could have brought him to his knees without killing him. They were trigger happy. God bless James and God bless the shooter.

  7. I am sorry for the loss of your cousin. There are many things the police could have done differently, like use a taser, as it happened in other parts of the country but until we manage to take care of all of these veterans after they come home from combat, too many officers will have to make the same choice and more families will suffer needlessly.

    I am also sorry for your husband. I thank God everyday mine came out of the darkness for the most part and what could't be healed, we learned to live with.

  8. a MARINE that has PTSD in the eyes of the south ga law is a threat, despite their nature, Combat Veterans in general tend to be out casted the the cop community. PTSD is misunderstood by 99% of the people who have never been in combat, sometimes it even seems that the local cops are evious of the combat vets, because thmay not have had what it took the serve the Country. Instead some small town in Ga is just a place that cops get the opportunity to keep harrassing this vets.
    Regardless "Simper FI".


If it is not helpful, do not be hurtful. Spam removed so do not try putting up free ad.