Memorial website in the memory of your loved one
Tributes and Condolences
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Your Life Lives on to help others  / Dana Hardy (Friend to Julie )
I am writing this in the role of a therapist that cares about the how war and violence effects all women and men of our world.  Josh gave up his life because as he knew it, it was too difficult to live under those conditions.  He is one of many whom have these daily experiences.  I believe he is giving to other veterans as well as other individuals with PTSD and secondary PTSD (Those living with victims of PTSD or exposed to it) through the wonderful work of his Aunt Julie...reaching out to those that need help.  Many of the individuals you see holding out a bucket or a cup at the exit ramps of the freeway interstates are veterans... please do not pass them up...give what you can.  A high percentage of the homeless in all streets of our nations are veterans with PTSD.  Yes some of them smell of alcohol or reefer./cannabis...but that is the cheapest way they can cope.  Contact your congress people...  the Veterans benefits are being cut...this is NOT right!  A ethnic group that serves in the military well are Native Americans....their benefits as an ethnic group are being cut.  Please ...  reach out and help in any way you possibly can.  Thank you Aunt Julie for this wonderful work that you do in behalf of our nation of PTSD individuals.  Love and Light, and Marching for Peace,  Dana
My heart breaks for each of you.  / Elaine Marshall (A fellow Vet )
For your Josh to have to suffer this way, without the help he needed from the VA, it's a national tragedy. I know he loved each and every one of you but, the pain got in his way.  Never give up this fight!!
Im so sorry.,.,.,  / Daphne Demetroudis (Passer by )
Im so sorry for the loss of such a great man, he fought so bravely in this war that makes no sense, but since he loved hs country this is what he and others thought was best, until he realized and began to wonder why are we fighting for?  My father was a Vietnam Veteran he went to war twice once because they sent him and the second time because he wanted to.  My mom told me stories about all the nightmares my dad had when he came home form the war, how depressed he was, how he lost not only his close friends but his best friend right in front of him, according to my that drove my dad to the edge even though he kept going but ever since that day that war..he was never the same, he never smoked before the war but after he did, and I blame a great deal of his death on all the chemicals that was inVietnam something called Agent Orange that cause my dads Diabetis and God knows if it caused him his heart problems to but he died last year at the age of 58 of a heart attack in his sleep, and the biggest thing is that if he had the chance to have fought in another war while he was alive he would have. thats how much he loved this country.  I personally love this country but dont agree with this War, to many young men and women dying for dads life and your brother or son is worth more than this or any war.  Im so sorry that you didnt notice the signs before it was too late and thats the thing..since they are going through hell inside of themselves they usually dont share it with anyone else, they carry the cross all to themselves.  But as you meantioned the government knows what these men and women go through what they have seen and what they have had to do, so they should already have some kind of support for them not just oh are you ok if you want to talk we are here to listen.THATS NOT sorry for writing so much but this has upset me so much and has brought me so much memories of my own dad.  please feel free to see his website under this name...John-Blackwell  God Bless you and your family forever ..please feel free to contact me about how I can help.  my email is
I join you in mourning, as I have lost several friends after they came home  / Jay Shaft
I work as a free lance investigative journalist, and I am now dedicated to documenting the price of war and the aftermath as the VA keeps cutting budgets and denying benefits.

My good friend Spc. Doug Barber also committed suicide in January of this year. I am still feeling the loss every day. I met him doing my job, an became a friend and brother because it is impossible to avoid feelings if you really go into a person life and problems.

I share in your loss and am going to do my best to make this an issue that WILL NOT BE FORGOTTEN AND PUSHED AWAY.

If there is anything that I can do to help feel free to contact me.

Jay Shaft,
Coalition For Free Thought In Media

Take a look at some of the interviews ansd letters I have published recently.
Scoop: CFTM: A Life Can Never Be The Same
A Life Can Never Be The Same By Dylan Hardwick- US Army veteran of Iraq 2/28/06 - Last night I went to dinner with my former platoon sergeant who was ... - 28k - Cached - Similar pages
This Country Has Failed Me In Every Way: Spc. William Wooldridge ...
The person being interviewed is Spc. William Wooldridge, who served with the 1123rd Transportation Company, 87th Troop Command, Arkansas National Guard. ... - 49k - Cached - Similar pages
Scoop: In Memory of Specialist Doug Barber
By Jay Shaft - Editor, Coalition For Free Thought In Media ... over a month in telling his story of what happened in Iraq and after he came home with PTSD. ... - 39k - Cached - Similar pages
Scoop: Iraq Vet: 'Iraq Took Away Our Innocence!'
Interview conducted by Jay Shaft, Editor and Lead Investigative Reporter for Coalition ... Jay Shaft is a freelance investigative writer, and the Managing ... - 93k - Cached - Similar pages
Scoop: I’m Just Not The Same Person I Was Before Iraq
Interview conducted by Jay Shaft - Editor and Lead Investigative Reporter for ... COPYRIGHT 2005- Coalition For Free Thought In Media©/ Jay Shaft ©2005 ... - 82k - Cached - Similar pages
A SOLDIER'S MOTHER WRITES: Too long and too painful

Always be there  / Michael Duncan (Best Friend/ Brother )

Josh and I have been friends since the summer of 2002 when we where both in training. We have never been apart since. Drill weekends where you find one of us you will find the other thats the way we liked it. We found comfort and where able to talk to each other about any thing. When this happened I was In shock and hurt at the same time. My best friend could not talk to me and I am also guilty I was not talking to him about the things that where going on. I think we both felt that we would look not as tuff if we said we had a problom. Now more then any thing I wish I could have my brother and best friend back. But I know he is watching over all of us. He is with us all in thoughts and dreams. You will forever be my brother.

Beyond words  / Diane Beltran (only through his memorial site )
What our soldiers endure is beyond the imagination of civilians. We think we understand, but we can't. We mothers of soldiers (I am one), wieves, sisters, brothers, fathers, friends and relations we cannot udnerstand. Nonetheless, our everday heroes (that is what our service men and women are) are trained to perform, trained to survive. It is sad to know the survial training stops when they return home. The outcome is beyond words and my ability to grasp. My heart breaks when reading about Josh. I have an incredible respect for his family who have channeled their grief into something positive, informative and IMPORTANT. What an amazing display of repsect for your son to honor him so. I will in turn honor him and all those who suffer from PSTD by taking the time to investiage this matter and contact my senators. My son, an E4, like Josh, has extended for another 12 months in Iraq. He expects to be back in Feb of 07. After reading the stories, I worry. I worry to the point of irrationality. I will, thanks to your excellent website, have a heart felt conversation with him about PSTD, and about asking for help. In my prayers, I will include Josh, and his family as my own family this night. I will give thanks that I found your site. Please know that you will have made a difference, albeit in one soldier's life. May God continue to strengthen and support you. With my sincerest respect to Josh and his family, I am Diane Proud Blue Star
I feel your pain  / Kimberly Bowman
I feel your pain every second of every day. My son Tim also completed suicide this past Thanksgiving after being home from Iraq for 8 months. He too suffered from PTSD and was never the same person when he returned. The pain is so constant and so intense that you don't think you will ever function and live again. One day at a time is my motto. Tim and Josh will be forever remembered for the wonderful people they were and I hope they have found each other in heaven. I know they would get along famously. My wish for them now is that they found the peace they were so desperately looking for and that we will meet again some day.
My condolences...  / Tim McDonald (Marine)
My condolences to all who miss him. I was in Iraq at the same time as the 339th, but I don't think our paths crossed directly. I have known PTSD personally, and I have seen it in others. My sypathies for what Josh's pain, and for his friends' and family's.
Fallen soldier  / Adam Metz (fellow soldier )

Througha a mutual friend, I found out that Omvig, passed away. I dont remeber alot about him, though I had the pleasure of serving with him in Iraq. Seldomly there words that can be used ot convey feelings, though the feelings of loss, that is one situation that i am at a loss for words. I wish all of you the best in the coming days, and I will pray that you can find your most needed strength in your times of need. Again I am so sorry, and no words can convey the weight of your loss.

God Bless

Bless this Angel...  / Tina Dore Angel Gene Bungay
Just stopping by to send my prayers and say hello to this very special angel. Praying our Angels watch over us every moment of everyday. 


If you haven't already released a Virtual Butterfly for your Angel, please feel free to follow the link below, I have created a site to release butterflies for all our angels...
My condolences  / Julia (Friend)
My condolences go out to his family.  My husband has been on two deployments so I know where you are coming from.  You will forever be in my thoughts and prayers.

There are not words......  / Carol O'Neill (visitor to website )
to express  my sorrow for all victims of PTSD; military or civilian. NEVER AGAIN!
Words cannot convey my sorrow for you  / Dave T. (PTSD Sufferer )
Hi, I am an ex foreign legion para who served in Rwanda, 1st Iraq War, Bosnia and Kosovo and various private contracts. I have been suffering from PTSD for over 10yrs but the French govt refuse to admit it exists, especially where the legionnaires are concerned. Coming from a military family I seen my father and grandfather suffering with what I now know to be PTSD. Your site is truly inspiring and I have passed it on to friends who I know will benefit. My thoughts go out to your family at this time. I would especially like to extend my thoughts to his brother who will be having his own issues to deal with. Also to his friends who he served with, life is never easy losing a true friend. Although it is never a replacement for Josh, your fight to publicise PTSD is truly inspiring. In the 2REP there is a saying LA Diable Marche Avec Nous (The Devil Marches With Us), the problem isn't him marching with us into battle, it's when we bring him home. Thank you Dave
I'm so sorry  / Tracy Trevino (none)
I'm so sorry for your loss, I will pray for you and your family, I have a nephew that already had problems of nightmares and stuff from being in Iraq and now he is going to Afghanistan . I wish to God this war was over and we could try and get help for all our troops. God bless them all. God bless you and your family Love, Tracy Trevino
Sorry / Gerry Veteran
I lost my only son with a rare form of cancer in 1996, so I know what you are going through, I was a combat veteran in Vietnam in 1966 thru 1967, and I've been their. It wasn't until 1996 I was diagnois with PTSD, 30 %, finally in 2001 I became 70% unemployabe, In Vietnam I served with the 173rd Airborne 2nd Battalion, Charlie Company, (The Herd or The we try harder group). Oh yea I got Medals, Purple Heart, and a no thank you .

It was a great lost when my son passed away, I thought about some strange things, God only knows, because I would never say, I go to the VA, my Doctor helps, but he has never walked in my shoes, and I never tell him the whole story, that is something I will take to heaven. I can never tell the whole story. PTSD sure I have it and I deal with it, but I could escape if I wanted to, it is so simple, but I have a spouse who is Disabled and being a good soldier I care for her, all the housework, running my little farm, being content with who I am and believing that one day I will be in peace and happy and maybe a vacation for a day, but I keep my faith going but my body is getting older, I just turn 61 last january. so my struggles are getting harder so I increase my belief in God and look for a brighter tomorrow. sometimes it cloudy and sometimes it clear. Again I know that your hurt , by the lost of your son is deeply in your heart as the lost of my son. So hang in their, keep up the great website, I enjoy reading it.

With Peace
With great sympathy  / Raquel Escudero
I am so very sorry to hear about your son.

I know quite a bit about this disease....I wrote a paper about PTSD & Vietnam Veterans.

While researching I found that all the material I found on this disease was bias, to say the least. 

I took it upon myself to research and try to locate several Vietnam Vets still alive. I was blessed to find about 67 of them and interviewed them all.

their stories are so similiar and they all state the same thing...."till this day, they have yet to receive adequate health attention, especially when PSTD is concerned!"

It's sad and that is why I also declare war against PSTD and am more than willing to assist you in whatever you may need.

R.I.P Joshua  / Kaitlin Hanenburg (Just a distant friend stopping by on the site )
I don't know Josh. But I am very thankful that he fought. I always have and always will have our troops in my heart. I am deeply sorry for your loss he fought gods war and now he is one of gods angels watching over you guys. I always wanted to help out the troops in some way. If you need anything else just e-mail me, god bless.

I wish you all the best  / Kris Johnson (none)

Reading about Josh I cant help but cry....That is a pain that you can never forget. I am almost 21 nad have lose both of my parents. my mother to heart problems in 96 and my father to medical suicide in 05. I know what it is like to watch someone that you love suffer everyday. I can imagine that pain that josh's family must be going through and i will keep you in my thoughts and prayers. I am so sorry for you loss

I lost my only son/child after 9 months in Afghanistan, 5 months after he returned home  / Susan Coats (A unknown friend )

My son blew his head off 5 months after he returned home from Afghanistan.  He was my only child.   He returned to work and tried to resume his life but his employer, the City of Columbus Health Dept. had different plans for him and I was there and saw what happened.  He lost his promotion for going to war.  They demoted him and kept him isolated from other co-workers.  He tried to get help.  No one there had time for him.  After exhausting all his avenues, he lit some candles, played a song by "The Band" called "It makes no difference now", put on his uniform, got his rosary and bible and knelt and put the gun to his head.  He couldn't keep fighting for the justice he deserved.  He was tired.  I have taken over his battle and will not stop till justice has been served.  I feel his pain every second of every day.  I should have not had to bury my only child.  My life as I knew it is over.  My MD has put me on numerous medications to deal with this but nothing is ever going to mend my broken heart.  I feel the pain you all are going through.  I always will.  

Susan Coats

wishing well from someone who fights the same demon...  / Lauren Brower (a new friend )
Your story and your family's please are wrenching and sadly beautiful.  I pray that light is shed on this plight due to their vigilance.

What you don't need is another sad story of struggle, but I wish to tell anyone who reads this that PTSD is very underestimated.  I am not a soldier and they deserve such respect, my heart goes out to him and his family.  My experience is different, but sadly the same as many others who are suffering in silence.  Many Josh did.  That much I know we share.  I am not a soldier, but a survivor.  3 times I have fought off stage IV Breast Cancer.  I began to feel that cancer was stalking me.  My startle response has become so exaggerated, my husband has to carefully wake me in the morning, because I jump and scream so intensely.  I cry for no reason.  I feel alone.  To get away, I traveled to New Orleans, and lived through hurricane Katrina at ground zero.  I came back shaken, startled, feeling out of control and unsure.  But I am lucky.  I know what this disease is.  And knowing your enemy is the biggest step in fighting the battle.  I have help.  Sadly Josh didn't and many others don't.  They don't know why they are like this, and they think they are alone.  They don't have to feel that way.  What you are doing is the biggest honor to his memory.  What you are doing will save lives and spirits.  But it will only work if others hear us.  I hope by sharing a part of my story others will realize they need to come forward.  Not hide in the shadows.  We must speak.  Its the right that Josh died protecting.

I wish all peace...
Lauren Brower
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