Sunday, December 10, 2017

Steelers Army Veteran Alejandro Villanueva Talks About PTSD

Steelers LT Alejandro Villanueva revealed why he served three tours in Afghanistan

Atlanta Journal Constitution
Stephen Knox
December 9, 2017

Pittsburgh Steelers left tackle Alejandro Villanueva has one of the most interesting stories in the NFL.

Villanueva graduated from West Point, and while there he walked onto the Army football team. Before beginning his career with the Eagles in 2014, he served three tours of duty in Afghanistan. He is a decorated Army Ranger, winning a National Service Medal and a bronze star.
However, he revealed that a big reason why he served the final two tours in Afghanistan was due to the struggles he had once he returned home.
“Now I started developing a fear of flying. I started developing even a fear of bacon because it can give you cancer,” Villanueva said to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Ed Bouchette. “So you start developing all these things because you’re like ‘Holy smokes, I’m a healthy 20-year-old now back in normal society, I have a life expectancy. I don’t have to die tomorrow.’ It’s a very tough thing to reconcile in your mind. It causes a lot of stress. I think that’s one of the main reason for PTSD is that I was ready to die and now I don’t have to die.
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