President Barack Obama presented Staff Sgt. Ty Carter with the Medal of Honor in a ceremony at the White House on Monday. While the initial focus of Obama’s remarks was on the heroism portrayed by Carter, it switched to a discussion about Carter’s struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Carter was receiving the award for bravery shown during the Battle of Kamdesh in October 2009. The outpost was attacked by more than 300 Taliban fighters, but Carter and his unit stood their ground and refused to surrender.
Obama recounted the story of the attack before then focusing on his mental state after coming back home.
“I want to recognize his courage in the other battle he has fought,” Obama said. “Ty has spoken openly, with honesty and extraordinary eloquence, about his struggle with post-traumatic stress; the flashbacks, the nightmares, the anxiety, the heartache that makes it sometimes almost impossible to get through a day.”
He continued on to say that this is a larger issue that needs to be addressed.
“Our nation needs to keep summoning the commitment and the resources to make sure we’re there when you reach out. Because nobody should ever suffer alone. And no one should ever die waiting for the mental health care they need.”