Everyone we interview for the “My Life, My Story” project is, of course, a Veteran. Some of them talk about war – what they’ve seen in war, who they’ve lost, how it changed them. But at the core of almost every single one of the 5,000-plus life stories we’ve written since 2103 is love.

A veteran might focus on his or her love for a spouse. Another talks about a parent, a child, a brother, or a fellow soldier or sailor. Many talk about their love for their country, and how that informed their decision to join the military in the first place. Some talk about all of those, and more.

But we also encounter a lot of stories about what happens when love is absent or disappears. Veterans have told us about what it feels like to get a ‘Dear John’ or ‘Dear Jane’ letter from a fiancée while serving halfway around the world. They’ve told us what it’s like to be disowned from family, or what it’s like to grow up in a place where no one seems to want you around, to be abandoned.

In this week’s episode, the Veteran, Toby, talks openly about how much difference love can make in a person’s life.


Seth Jovaag is a writer, editor and producer for the My Life, My Story project.

Heart shaped bowl with healthy fruit and vegetablesDallas VA team’s virtual high blood pressure symposium awarded
Car with IT WILL BE ALL RIGHT signTouching family signs a sign of the times

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