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Friday, April 22, 2016

Any person who has ever served in combat will tell you there is a special bond among them and others who have the same experience. It’s something that cannot be explained to civilians. It’s just there. And it is strong.

Sgt. Joseph Serna is a former special forces soldier. He did four combat tours in Afghanistan in a career with the Army that spanned two decades. He was also nearly killed three times and his experiences left him with what many combat veterans suffer from – PTSD.

He was admitted to a veterans treatment program in North Carolina. The program is presided over by District Court Judge Lou Olivera. Serna has struggled with sobriety and has appeared before Olivera a number of times. Recently, he admitted to the Judge he had lied about a urine test. The Judge was forced to sentence Serna to 24 hours in jail as a result.  

When Serna sat down in his cell, the door opened and there was Judge Olivera. He sat down next to Serna and the door shut. Olivera informed Serna he was going to stay there with him the entire time!

You see, Judge Olivera is a combat veteran himself. He fought in the first Gulf War and was concerned enough about Serna that he chose to spend that night in jail with him, talking, and sharing stories about their service.

Now that is compassion. 

What do you think about this? Did the Judge do the right thing and should we be doing more about combat troops who suffer from PTSD?

H/T: The Washington Post

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