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Entry Title: "My Brother's War"
Jessica Hines
, United States
Category and Expertise: Conflict, Still Life, Family, Professional

Entry Description: In 1967 my brother, Gary, was sent to war in Viet Nam by the US Army. Because our parents were not well and Gary was our caretaker, I was sent to live with relatives. I rarely saw my brother again until I was grown.

Discharged from the army in 1969 with a “service connected nervous disorder”, we later came to know his problem as “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder”. My pre-war brother, a normal and well-adjusted person had become, according to the US Veteran’s Administration, 50% disabled. He took his own life ten years later.

Twenty-five years after his death, in an attempt to understand his life, I began to make photographs about what I learned. I managed to contact some of Gary’s wartime friends, attended a reunion of his company, discovered he had fallen in love during the war, and I twice traveled to Viet Nam to retrace Gary “footsteps” using his photographs and letters to serve as my guides. The story continues to unfold.