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HBO: Alive Day Memories

Consider the Cost

The solider pictured above suffered multiple injuries to include the loss of both eyes. He placed the diamonds of the ring his fiancée returned to him in one glass eye. She called off their engagement, as she could not live with his injuries.

The HBO special “Alive Day Memories: Home from Iraq” documents soldiers who suffered severe injury during their service in Iraq. Due to advances in trauma surgery, 90% of the wounded will survive their injuries. The show documents stories of soldiers from their enlistment to life altering injury. Timothy Greenfield Sanders photographs these soldiers allowing the many to confront the sacrifice of the few. The photographs allow the viewer to contemplate how she would manage without eyes, an arm, both legs. It is not only the physical injuries but also the mental injuries that shape a soldier’s postwar life. The New York Time recently ran a series of articles on violent crimes committed by Iraq vets. The financial cost of the war is in the billions; the personal cost to the United States soldiers and society has yet to be fully determined.