The breaking point came when Sandra Rivera found their 9-year-old son backed against a wall with his arms over his face, shielding himself from her husband’s screaming.
Desperate, she did what is unfathomable for a Marine wife: She called her husband’s commander.It was a Friday in fall 2010, about a year and a half after Gunnery Sgt. Felix Rivera emerged as the sole survivor of a car bomb in Afghanistan. By the following Monday, he was checked into a mental hospital.
His struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury were ravaging their marriage. Husband and wife had been relegated to patient and caregiver.Sandra wishes she could say it was love that kept her from leaving when things were so bad that she regularly hid in a closet to cry.
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