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Soldiers Reflect on the Affect of War on Them and Their Families

By Pat Bradley


Plattsburgh, NY – Ray Trent Jr was active Army for 26 years and deployed to Iraq from 2004 to 2005 and 2008 until 2009. He divorced after his last deployment. We met in the Clinton County Veterans Services office.

Ray Trent meets with Clinton County Veterans' Services Agency Director Steve Bowman regularly as he tries to get an appointment with a VA facility.

First Lieutenant Salvatore Cautela, from Saratoga Springs, was in the Marine Corps for 8 years before training as a Explosive Ordinance Disposal National Guard officer and deploying to Basra, Iraq. He says his wife sacrifices as much as he does.

Captain Chris Gookin, from Colchester VT, has been in the VT National Guard for about 19 years. He has experienced multiple deployments and was single, until his last, when he left a girlfriend behind.

Vermont Army National Guard journalist Sargant Jason Brace says his second deployment was more difficult than his first, because he had just gotten married.

Each soldier found that the transition back to stateside life could be challenging. First Lieutenant Salvatore Cautela says there are new routines to get used to.

But some soldiers come back and must adjust to permanent changes. New York National Guard Sargent Chris Paiser came home to a wife and 4 children following a catastrophic injury that left him blind.

Again, Vermont National Guard Captain Chris Gookin.