War's Other Casualties

Armen Keteyian's shocking story about the high rate of suicide among war veterans has generated a lot of comment. (You can watch the report in the monitor on the left).

And over at Primary Sources, broadcast associate Ariel Bashi has blogged about what it was like to put together this investigation:

CBS News invited five families from all walks of life, from all over the country to share their story. Men and women, mothers and fathers, sisters and girlfriends with nothing in common except one very painful reality…each had a loved one who honorably served their country...each had a loved one who came home a very different person…and each had a loved one who couldn't bear the thought of going on any longer.

Every year thousands of desperate soldiers end their lives… often returning home from war unscathed on the outside, riddled with battle scars on the inside…scars often times unrecognizable to the naked eye, until it's too late.

The families all entered together some more reluctant than others to open up. But as time passed, jackets came off and emotional barriers came down. In essence they were all one family united in their battle to keep memories and hope alive.

Armen entered, greeting each one individually, with a handshake, a hug and a kiss…knowing he'd soon open an emotional wound that would never heal…that none of us could ever understand…but we'd try.

Scanning the room, the first thing that struck me was when they all sat down. It was so eerily quiet you could hear a proverbial pin drop. Each person immediately grabbed the hand of those sitting next to them providing some semblance of reassurance that life does go on…that they'd get through it together…that their voices in unison would tell the world what's really happening to our men and women in uniform.

Check out the rest over at Primary Sources. The second part of Armen's exclusive investigation airs tonight.