CNN anchor Brooke Baldwin became so overwhelmed with emotion after the father of an Iraqi War veteran read part of his son’s suicide note that she struggled to continue the broadcast.
Baldwin had the parents of Daniel Somers on to discuss their son’s plight as he pursued treatment at the Phoenix VA hospital where veterans were being put on secret waiting lists and dying while awaiting care.
Somers killed himself last year, and his father, Howard Somers, read a portion of the suicide note left behind:
“Is it any wonder then that the latest figures show 22 veterans killing themselves each day? That is more veterans than children killed at Sandy Hook every single day. Where are the huge policy initiatives? Why isn’t the president standing with those families at the State of the Union? Perhaps because we were not killed by a single lunatic but rather by our system of dehumanization, neglect, and indifference.”
“I derive no pleasure from any activity, everything simply comes down to passing time until I can sleep again. Now, to sleep forever seems to be the most merciful thing.”
Somers voice cracked as he finished up and his wife, Jean Somers, began to cry. When the camera came back to a live shot of Baldwin, she could be seen trying hard to maintain her composure as she fought back the tears.
“Forgive me,” she said apologetically. “This is tough.”
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