Service-members, veterans, and family members testified with the Operation Recovery research team throughout 2012 and early 2013, and a selection participated in additional follow-up interviews in January 2014. The testimony presented here has been distilled from the original interviews, edited for clarity and readability, and converted into a first-person narrative format. In order to protect the privacy of all soldiers, veterans, and family members who testified anonymously, most identifying information has been either omitted or changed throughout. This includes most geographical locations associated with the testifier’s life history, excepting those associated with their service at Fort Hood and life in the surrounding region. Where narratives included in-depth timelines of events in their own and others’ lives, key dates and surrounding details have been omitted or changed throughout, in order to protect the privacy of testifiers as well as those involved in their stories who have not consented to appear in this archive.
Much of the editing done to transition the testimony interviews into the narrative format presented here is left visible through the use of certain punctuation, such as ellipses (…) where multiple words or lines have been omitted, and brackets around words and phrases which editors have
added in or changed from the testifier’s original speech, for clarity. Many of these editing functions were necessary simply to transition the transcribed testimony interview—a record of spoken language—to a readable text document. Other instances of editing served to clarify the testifier’s meaning when their speech referred to parts of the interviewer’s questions, which are edited out. Where significant contextual information present in the original interview is not reflected in the testifier’s own narrative, it has been presented throughout the testimony in editor’s notes, which appear in italics.
Testifiers who chose to participate anonymously are identified by aliases, which is denoted by an asterisk (*) next to the name presented. In addition, other individuals appearing in the testimony who have not consented to testifying publicly are also identified with aliases. The names of all military personnel below the rank of O-3 have been omitted or changed throughout as well, aside from Fort Hood’s commanding generals and higher ranking Army, Department of Defense, and Veterans Affairs officials of national public notoriety. The anonymity of the testimony presented here is intended to protect active duty service- members and veterans from retribution from within the chain of command, or any adverse impact to their ongoing access to treatment or benefits. The testimony is likewise presented to highlight the effects of military policies, not the actions of individual service-members.