U.S. Navy photo

Last year, many of you read my thoughts on the internet sensation known as #22pushupchallenge or #22KILL. I wasn’t against the challenge, and I’m certainly not against raising awareness about veteran suicide, but I still contend that such public displays need to be accompanied by substantive action.

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Screenshot via CNN

On Sept. 28, Amanda Souza, a Gold Star wife, stood up at a veterans town hall in Fort Lee, Virginia. With tears in her eyes, she told President Barack Obama about her husband, who committed suicide.

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U.S. Air Force photo illustration/Airman 1st Class Corey Hook

There is a statistic that has been widely quoted in the veteran community that highlights an estimated 22 veterans a day are committing suicide. It is a deeply troubling statistic and has galvanized the veteran movement, both from inside the military and veteran communities, and externally, to bring about a wide range of programming nationwide. The statistic, however, is widely misunderstood.

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