Pomegranate Health Systems was honored to have U.S. Marines Staff Sargeant, Tony Storey, visit our residents on February 7, 2012. Storey, whom is just back from Iraq where he served two tours of duty, participated in a therapy project developed by OSU social work intern, Amy F. and supervising therapist, Judy D. The residents presented Storey with letters they had written to active duty soldiers in Afghanistan. The purpose was to help residents connect with the wider world beyond theirs, develop greater compassion and interests, and broaden horizons beyond immediate concerns.
Storey has 21 years of service with the U.S. Army. During the presentations held in each of Pomegranate’s residential and acute units, Sargeant Storey gamely fielded a diverse range of questions from the teens. He explained that, ‘Every marine is a rifleman and learns how to fight.’ As a staff sergeant he was the platoon leader responsible for the life of 40 marines. During Operation Phantom Fury, there were up to 15,000 marines involved in the conflict. A marine swears an oath to defend the U.S. Constitution against foreign and domestic enemies. A typical enlistment is four years. From a high of 202,000 enlisted men and women, the count currently stands at 175,000.
Storey spoke on the discipline required, answered questions about enlisting, basic training, his uniform, rank, showering, food (from a can), thirst (temperatures of 132 F), camel spiders (nasty), lack of sleep, battle, injuries, weather (they do have winter in Iraq), working conditions (wind, heat, sand, lack of sleep), weather (rain during the Desert Storm Operation was black from crude oil), and what female recruits wear, for the interested adolescents, who shook his hand, thanked him, and delivered colorful cards for the troops.
[Photo credit: U.S. Marine Sargeant Storey addressing Pomegranate Health Systems teens on boy’s unit while Judy D. and Amy F. look on]