Thursday, September 12, 2013

After suicide, parents want you to remember Dillion

Remembering Dillion
Spencer Daily Reporters
By Dana Larsen
Special to the Daily Reporter
Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Lisa and Jeff Naslund of Galva have an unusual message on their answering machine.

If you are a soldier, it says, talk to us.

The talking still isn't easy, says Lisa, her voice choking with emotion as she speaks of her son Dillion, a decorated veteran of action in Iraq and Afghanistan, who died alone on a gravel road near Storm Lake last December, pulling the trigger on a gunshot crashing through his chest.

He was 25, and had lived a lot of hell in a short time.

Dillion's parents have taken on a war of their own - fighting to connect other troubled veterans and their families with services that can help. They have spoken out about post-traumatic stress disorder being suffered by veterans such as Dillion as they struggle to fit into life back on the home front.

They also worked with a producer to film a 45-minute documentary titled simply "Dillion," which will air for the first time September 11 on Public Television in Kansas. At the moment, Iowa Public TV has not picked the film up, but the family hopes to find ways to get the work seen around the country in the months to come.

Their message is a simple one: Get help.

"We're not counselors or therapists, we're just a family that has been broken and has had to live this nightmare," Lisa says. "We just want to reach out to other soldiers and let them know that there is help available.
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