Military suicides among casualties of post-Sept. 11 wars

Twelve years after al-Qaida terrorists drew the United States into war, the military casualties are still mounting on the battlefront in Afghanistan. As our Wednesday editorial notes, they also continue on the homefront – including a record 352 suicides among active-duty troops last year. For each family, the loss is a private shock and sorrow. One such Iowa family shares its grief and story in “Dillion,” a documentary directed by Wichita filmmaker Tom Zwemke that will air at 8 p.m. Wednesday on KPTS, Channel 8 in Wichita. After serving two U.S. Army tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, Dillion Naslund (in photo) was slated for another deployment this year. He had been drinking too much and struggling to sleep when, at 25, he ended his life last December. “He was fighting the demons, and those demons took over,” his father, Jeff Naslund, says in the film, in which his mother, Lisa Naslund, urges those in pain to get help. May all those who need help seek and find it. As Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recently said, seeking such treatment is a “choice that embodies moral courage, honor and integrity.”