Army Wounded Warrior Program Honors Four Years of Service
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (Army News Service, April 30, 2008) - The U.S. Army Wounded Warrior Program is proud to announce that April 30, 2008 marks four years of committed service to severely wounded, injured, and ill Soldiers and their Families.

AW2 assists and advocates for the most severely wounded Soldiers by providing individualized support throughout their lifetimes, wherever they are located - regardless of their military status.

AW2 assists the unique population of Soldiers who have, or are expected to receive, an Army disability rating of 30% or more in one of several specific categories.

Each AW2 Soldier is assigned to one of the AW2 advocates located throughout the country who will work personally to connect a Soldier or Family member to a broad range of services. AW2 advocates help Soldiers and Families in a variety of ways, including working with them to obtain full benefits, educational opportunities, financial and career counseling, as well as helping those who want to stay in the Army continue their service.

"AW2 is the only constant we have. The only constant we can count on," said Nelida Bagley, the mother of an AW2 Soldier who suffers from a severe open-brain injury. "Our AW2 advocate was there during the first 14-hour surgery, was there with resources, was there with a hug, was there with answers."

One component of the Army's focus on caring for wounded warriors is AW2, and all wounded, injured and ill Soldiers are assigned to a Warrior Transition Unit, which are located at one of 35 installations throughout the Army. Soldiers with extensive medical needs are simultaneously assigned to a WTU and the Army Wounded Warrior Program, and receive a local AW2 advocate to assist long term.

Soldiers in a WTU receive support from a triad of care, which includes a primary care manager, nurse case manager and military squad leader to focus on healing.

"The Army is fully committed to the care and support of its Soldiers and Families," said Col. Jim Rice, director of the Army Wounded Warrior Program. "These Soldiers have given much and now its time for the Army to give back to them and their loved ones. AW2 will be with them for as long as it takes."

Originally known as the Disabled Soldier Support System, the program was established on April 30, 2004, as the Army responded to the needs of the most severely wounded, injured or ill Soldiers from the war on terrorism. The name of the program was changed to the Army Wounded Warrior Program in 2005 and currently the program assists more than 2,700 soldiers.

Out of AW2 Soldiers:

AcE+' 24% have lost limbs

AcE+' 20% suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder

AcE+' 17% suffer from traumatic brain injury

AcE+' 10% suffer from paralysis

AcE+' 7% suffer from blindness / vision loss

For more information about the Army Wounded Warrior Program, call 1-800-237-1336 or visit: