U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Nathan Knapke

Sometime after I returned from a deployment in Afghanistan in 2010, Sebastian Junger and the late Tim Hetherington’s documentary film “Restrepo” was released. Many service members anticipated the documentary, and having gone through a U.S. Army leadership school with many of the film’s enlisted soldiers a year prior and my former mentor being a public affairs liaison to the unit, I was among the curious. A year later in 2011, my unit was tasked to close the door on operations in Iraq. As resources became limited and mail service stopped, Junger’s “War” was passed around and read throughout our offices.

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Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures

The Oscar-nominated Danish foreign film titled “A War” sweeps the viewer into its story as the  opening scene follows a light infantry unit hit by an improvised explosive device while on patrol in southern Afghanistan.

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Task & Purpose photo by Jennifer Dolsen

In a closed casket ceremony, nearly 1200 strangers packed into a Fort Wayne, Indiana, funeral home to honor a man they never knew.

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AP Photo/Ron Agnir

In 1966, at 26 years old, decorated nurse and Vietnam veteran Sarah Blum joined the U.S. Army, drawn to serve by the daily news reports on the radio.

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AP Photo/ Tamir Kalifa

A year after the Fort Hood community experienced a second active-shooter rampage, it remains difficult to put into words and comprehend why such acts of violence occur in tight-nit military communities. As soldiers, families, and Texas lawmakers gather to honor and pay respect to the three service members killed and 12 wounded in last year’s April 2 mass shooting by Spc. Ivan Lopez — who took his own life after being confronted by military police — there is still no indication that this violent act could have been prevented by identifying early warning signs.

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Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Demetrius Kennon

The nonprofit hunger-relief charity, Feeding America, recently released a study that concluded one out of four households with a current military member required assistance from the group’s 196 networks of food banks throughout the United States in 2012.

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