Regrettably, the lack of knowledge in the military, and the flat-out lack of desire to recognize and learn about something that is reaching epidemic levels within our nation, makes it impossible for those in charge to spot these cases, and even more difficult for those afflicted to even realize something is going on with them and feel safe enough to reach out and seek help.
In the times we live in, there seems to be war, or the possibility of war, breaking out everywhere. With so many of our young men and women in harm's way, serving their country proudly, it's appalling that we must also hear how a young soldier has felt so overwhelmed by life that his only way out has been to end his life prematurely! Many if not all of these young men and women had been fighting depression, whether diagnosed or not. All the signals must have been there in each and every one of these 169 cases, but ignorance is usually the greatest blinding force. They fell through. We have all failed them.
How many of these precious lives could have been spared, if their leaders had possessed the knowledge and the tools to distinguish and care for these wounded soldiers? How many could still be with us if their leaders had lived up to the word (leader), honoring each and every single one of the 23 leadership traits which they learn, brag about, and talk so much about, but few actually seem to possess? Tact, empathy, compassion, and humility are usually the leadership traits that begin fading away as the chevrons and awards pile up. We are still looking for those true, yet "few good men," now more than ever. There are still plenty of them. Let the real leaders step forward and take charge.