“I’m a bicycle ridin, banjo pickin, peace ramblin hillbilly from the Ouachita Mountains of Arkansas!”
Jacob was also a veteran of three combat tours in Afghanistan—Operation Enduring Freedom. To overcome those demons, Jacob cycled thousands of miles, “A Ride Till the End,” he called it, to promote peace and justice. He rallied fellow veterans to take political action. And he stood strong for military resisters–especially those who were prosecuted for refusing to do the things he himself had participated in.
Every day at least a dozen US military veterans take their own lives, with some estimates at over 22. In the end, these will far outnumber the fatalities on the far away battlefields. Yesterday, we were reminded that statistics are easy to live with, until the statistic strikes close to home.
We will likely never know why Jacob took his own life. He seemed to have done more than anyone to heal himself from the unseen physiological devastation of war. Today we simply remember an amazing individual whose contributions to our community go far beyond what words we can muster.
The Human Cost of War: IVAW Testimony
Top photo: Iraq Veterans Against the War and Civilian Soldier Alliance members marched in the People’s Climate March in New York City remembering the life of our fallen friend Jacob George. September 2014