Charlie Brown's New Radio Spot, by Cody Conway, Sgt. USMC
Thanks to you, this past week, production was completed on Charlie Brown's first radio spot of the 2008 campaign. Entitled "The War at Home," the ad speaks for itself. And as an Iraq War veteran who is fighting each day to heal my scars and rebuild my life, it speaks for me.
Who Charlie Brown is, and the kind of leadership he represents for veterans like me isn't about partisan politics. That's why I want to tell you my story, and why I'm asking you to help keep this ad on the air by pledging your support today.
Growing up in Roseville, I had two dreams---to serve my country in the Marine Corps, and to become a mechanic-a lifelong passion that began from the moment I was old enough to hold a wrench. When I graduated High School in 2000, I got to live both, as a Marine Amphibious Assault Vehicle Repairman.
My unit was part of the initial ground invasion into Iraq in March of 2003. I injured my right shoulder, leg and abdomen while removing an engine during a sandstorm outside Baghdad in April. Still able to hold a rifle with my left arm, I finished my tour of duty. But by the time I came home in July, the severity of my injuries left me unable to continue my career as a Marine or a mechanic. I was devastated.
Several unsuccessful surgeries later, I was home with my fiancé and two foster children. I couldn't work, and simply wasn't the same person who deployed. My once happy and energetic demeanor had been replaced by what counselors call the "thousand yard stare." And left to fight alone in a VA system that was unprepared for war, I was met not by solutions, but by resistance.
Two years later I was financially broke, physically and emotionally broken, and feeling increasingly abandoned by politicians that spend more money promising "support for our troops" than delivering on that promise. I found myself caught in a downward spiral--and eventually I hit rock bottom.
Ultimately, it was my friends, community based veterans groups, and fellow veterans like Charlie Brown who were willing to listen and really understand that helped get me back on track. In fact, the first few times I met with Charlie, I didn't even know he was running for Congress. He was much more interested in my health and success than my vote.
Today, I am a college student, working towards a degree in Social Work and a career of helping veterans--because I know from experience that the war will not end when our troops return from Iraq and Afghanistan.
That's why I believe we need battle tested leaders like Charlie Brown in Congress---not just because he's a fellow combat vet, or because he stands for the new direction America needs, but because he understands that patriotism---like support for our troops--- is measured in action, not words.
I want to thank you again for giving me the chance to tell my story, and for standing for something much bigger than partisan politics in this campaign.
Please have a safe, happy holiday season.
Cody Conway, Sgt. USMC
Iraq War Veteran
P.S. Please help keep this ad on the air by contributing what you can to Charlie Brown for Congress today. 5% of your donation will support organizations helping veterans and families in need.