Pittsburg mother warns of PTSD's dangers after soldier son commits suicide
FOX 2 News
March 14, 2016
A mom in Pittsburg wants to speak out about the signs of post traumatic stress disorder after her soldier son killed himself recently.
The family of 30-year-old army veteran Terry O'Hearn is holding a memorial service for him at the VFW Post in Antioch this Saturday. His mother Robin Kiepert wants to help other military families struggling to cope with PTSD.
"For people like Terry, it's a need to take care of them when they get back. They're not the same person that left," said Kiepert, who's an Air Force veteran herself.
Kiepert says Terry was loving, playful and easygoing when he enlisted in the Army.
As a soldier, he saw combat during two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
He survived with minor physical injuries, but the emotional wounds ran deep.
"When he got back from Afghanistan, he was angry. His personality really changed," said Kiepert.
She says the change was initially understandable because there is a period of adjustment to civilian life. But over time, it became more pronounced and then a suicide attempt, followed by treatment at the VA hospital in Palo Alto.
She says Terry was diagnosed with PTSD.
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