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Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Ind. Gov't. - “Soldier Girls: The Battles of Three Women at Home and at War”

A review by Maureen Groppe, Star Washington Bureau, of the book titled “Soldier Girls: The Battles of Three Women at Home and at War,” is on the front page of today's Indianapolis Star.

I read this book early in January and recommended it to friends, writing quickly:

It is about three women from the Evansville area. Interesting look at Nat'l Guard women who enlisted for the promise of education, the $$, promises of only a few weeks a year of service -- then 9-11 happened.
Groppe today writes a more in-depth review:
The book, written by journalist Helen Thorpe and published last year, follows the Indiana women through their enlistment, training, deployments and difficult re-entries into civilian lives.

“I had one main question in my mind when I began,” Thorpe said. “And that was, ‘Why do veterans sometimes struggle to return home?’ I specifically went looking for people who could help me understand what that struggle was about.”

That struggle, at least for the women profiled, included some unflattering behaviors. There was abuse of alcohol and prescription drugs, as well as extramarital affairs — including with officers. * * *

The stories told in the book can be helpful in understanding at least some of the general struggles of veterans.

That’s particularly important in Indiana, which had more members of its National Guard deployed in 2009 than any other state. The 3,400 Indiana soldiers who went to Iraq in 2008 represented Indiana’s largest single deployment since World War II.

My take-away from the book was a much better picture of the backgrounds of some of the women who enlist in the Guard, and how deployment, sometimes multiple deployments to the Middle East, impacted their lives and those of their families for the long-term.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 17, 2015 09:44 AM
Posted to Indiana Government