Submitted by: Jonathon Benjamin

Category: Books

A quintessential first-person account of an American veteran grappling with PTSD, physical and emotional traumas, the veteran health-care system, and the pressures and misconceptions that veterans face from their families and society as a whole.

Although probably vastly underreported to the Veterans Administration, 23 veterans take their own lives every single day in the United States.

A retired airman and wounded veteran of the U.S. Air Force, Jonathon Benjamin was told he would never walk again after a catastrophic car crash overseas left him with a severe traumatic brain injury and lingering deficits that took more than five years to overcome.

Still, against all the odds, Benjamin received a degree from George Washington University at the age of 24, under the GI Bill. It is luck, fate, discipline and tenacity that kept him from giving up many times, even when he saw other veterans fall victim to their own demons and felt like he did not belong in this world – including an instance that would have made him part of the statistic.

This veteran’s story is illuminating and heartbreaking, but it should not shock the public. The veteran suicide epidemic continues to rage in the United States. This narrative focuses a hot lens on the difficulties that veterans must face when they re-enter the real world, especially when support is unavailable and civilians can’t begin to understand their plight.

The book is available now on Amazon in paperback, audiobook and eBook formats:

About the author:

Jonathon Benjamin is a Seattle-based playwright and author, originally from Fort Lewis, Wash. Coming from a long genealogical line of Army veterans, he broke tradition and enlisted into the Air Force in 2010. He was stationed in England with the Air Force when, after a nearly fatal accident and over three years in hospital care, he was medically retired. Jonathon honorably served for five years, 12 days and 4.5 hours as an airman and, being one for the dramatics of persevering resilience, he was accepted to and enrolled at the George Washington University in 2015, the same year that he was discharged from the hospital. He began playwriting as an undergraduate and his plays have been produced at the Kennedy Center’s American College Theatre Festival, Portland, Oregon’s Pulp Stage and the Rainbow Theatre Project in Washington, D.C. In 2018, just three years after starting, he graduated from George Washington University magna cum laude with a degree in theatre and a minor in creative writing. His multi-award-winning debut novel "American Airman, a Memoir of a Wounded Veteran" is available on Amazon in paperback, audiobook and eBook formats.