Wikimedia Commons/Michael Yon

This article was originally published on Task & Purpose on March 17, 2016.

Even if you aren't familiar with Marvel's gun-toting brutal vigilante, the Punisher, chances are you've seen his symbol: a leering white skull on a black background.

Showing up in Iraq and Afghanistan on unofficial unit patches; spray-painted on buildings, vehicles, and equipment; and as military tattoos, the skull may have greater renown than the comic-book character, especially among service members.

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As veterans, anytime we scroll through Facebook, play around on Twitter, or even change the channel on the TV, we’re inundated with ads designed specifically for us. Whether it’s a college that wants to get a slice of that G.I. Bill money cake, or some boot company trying to get veterans to buy another pair of uncomfortable footwear, current and former service members are prime targets.

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Associated Press photo by Jacquelyn Martin

The Navy SEAL Team Six veteran who gained fame when he went public saying he killed Osama bin Laden has a book coming out this spring about the May 2011 raid in Abbottabad, Pakistan.

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