The U.S. Army announced Thursday it is cutting about 40,000 soldiers nationwide. Fort Bragg is home to more than 50,000 troops in Fayetteville. The base will largely be spared deep cuts in the latest round of military downsizing.
Some combat veterans are posting signs in their yards, asking neighbors to be courteous with their fireworks this July Fourth weekend. The signs come from a non-profit called Military with PTSD, and it's sending them to vets across the country.
Christine Weber is a former Marine with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder who lives in Charlotte. She says sudden loud noises, including fireworks, remind her of gunfire and rocket launchers during her deployment in Iraq.
Fifteen military veterans are wrapping up a week-long academic training bootcamp at UNC-Chapel Hill designed to help them transition easier into college. It's part of a national program called the Warrior-Scholar Project.
Lara Taylor, director of Carolina's orientation, says some vets come straight from service, while others have been out for a few years.
The discipline of military service, as it does for many young men, changed John Blackjack’s life.
"He was a wild child with us," said Roseanne Wray, whose family adopted and raised Staff Sgt. Blackjack. "The Army did something wonderful for him. They turned him into a soldier."
Blackjack, who died May 31 of a respiratory illness, was a miniature mule. Since 1983, he had served as the mascot for a major supply unit, the 1st Theater Sustainment Command. An estimated 25,000 soldiers had contact with him while serving at Ft. Bragg since the Wrays donated him to the Army.
Most people expect their eternal rest will be peaceful.
But not the ones who want to be buried in the Eastern Carolina State Veterans Cemetery now under construction in Goldsboro.
North Carolina’s newest veterans cemetery is right under the flight path of Seymour Johnson Air Force Base. On some days, the roar of low-flying fighter jets and aerial tankers overwhelms the cemetery every few minutes.
A massive data breach at the federal Office of Personnel Management has exposed the Social Security numbers and personnel records of nearly every federal worker. The implications for federal employees, military service members and the intelligence community could be extraordinary.
But at a very basic level U.S. service members have been at high risk for identity theft for decades.