In contrast, we watched the evening’s news in stunned disbelief of the detailed accounts in the Fort Hood massacre, where so far, thirteen soldiers have fallen. The alleged shooter, an Army psychiatrist, was said to be acting out of character by giving away copies of the Koran and his furniture--maybe not so abnormal for someone who is about to be deployed on assignment out of the country.
My sister, Judy, a retired Army Reserve Lt. Colonel, had been at Fort Hood only a few weeks ago being trained on how to acclimate soldiers back into society after tours of duty during stressful times of war. I am glad she wasn’t there yesterday, but can’t help but think she might have known the alleged shooter or those he wounded or killed. After all, she knew those who were injured or killed at the Pentagon when it had been attacked on 9/11.
Because the alleged shooter is predicted to live, hopefully, answers will be gotten as to the reason or reasons he carried out such a horrific act. However, having several relatives in various branches of service during combat, I understand the stresses and stressors a soldier might endure. War is Hell. And even though our soldiers are in allegiance to keep our country and our families safe, war tears everything apart, having a tendency to kill more than just our enemy.
This man, who was a friend to many, was clearly so distraught on the inside, and like those who commit suicide, could not see any way out of his turmoil other than to shoot himself into someone else taking his life. Oddly, I feel compassion for this man, and after hearing of a second gunman in another state going on a killing rampage, cannot help but think more shootings will happen as the holidays get closer.
Yes, my heart feels wide open today to receive those souls who feel so alone and so afraid that they don’t know where to turn to gain the solace, to gain the peace, to gain the silence required to quiet their minds, and to know—and believe—someone loves them enough to help.
God Bless our Soldiers, God Bless America, and God Bless Us, Everyone.