A veteran received the salute of a lifetime from another veteran who noticed a message on the back window of her car telling the story of her brother, a Marine, and his struggle with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
“This man who is probably over 70 got out of his car, in the rain, in traffic and he saluted me because he saw the message regarding my brother,” veteran Lauren Osborne told WBBH.
Osborne has a sticker on the back window of her car, which states, “My brother was a U.S. Marine. He suffered from PTSD and committed suicide.” It also gives a phone number to the Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK.
Four years later, Cameron Fraclose committed suicide after a battle with PTSD.
The message resonated with the man enough for him to get out of his car in the rain to salute his fallen comrade.
The unidentified veteran told Osborne, “I am a Vietnam veteran, disabled, with PTSD, and I totally understand.”
The man was gone in an instant, but the message touched Osborne’s heart forever.
“That tiny act of kindness, it was literally, 20 seconds long on the side of the road Livingstone that he did this, I am just never going to forget it,” Osborne said.
The unidentified Vietnam veteran and Osborne are not alone in raising awareness about veteran suicide.
In May, a U.S. Marine veteran stood on a median at the intersection of Constitution Avenue and 23rd Street in Northwest Washington, DC, for 24 hours to raise awareness about veteran suicide, WJLA reported.
He also held a salute for 22 minutes to symbolize the 22 American veterans who take their lives each day.