FORT CAMPBELL, Ky. (AP) - Soldiers at Fort Campbell, Kentucky,
are not going about their regular duties today. Commanders have
told them to set aside those routines for three days as they focus
on suicide prevention.
There have been at least 11 suicides at the base this year -- an
average of one per week from January to March. Brig. Gen. Stephen
Townsend says there were two last week.
Townsend is making a series of addresses to the 25,000 soldiers
in the 101st Airborne Division this week. He told a group yesterday
that they "wouldn't hesitate to seek medical attention for a
physical wound," and shouldn't hesitate for a psychological injury
Col. Ken Brown, the head of chaplains for the base, says
frequent deployments by the division since 2001 have contributed to
the stress soldiers feel at Fort Campbell. Three 101st Airborne
combat brigades have gone through at least three tours in Iraq,
while the 3rd Brigade also served seven months in Afghanistan,
early in the war, and the 4th Brigade has just returned from a
15-month tour in Afghanistan.