Please remember to bring one of the following items to support the Texas Sentinel Foundation. Our donations will support the family of Staff Sergeant Jason Duke North, whose story is below the list.
List of Recommended Donations
- Baby ‘essentials’
- Diapers for the twins – 3 months and up
- Books and play things for the twins
- Books for 6 year old Haley
- Small items for Haley’s Stocking
- HEB and Kroger Gift Certificates
- Any Restaurant Gift Certificates
- Pantry items such as can goods, PB, condiments & paper goods
- Cash or Checks (payable to Barb Kelley)
In February of 2004, I joined the United States Army as a 19 delta cavalry scout. In my eight years in the Army, I completed two tours in Iraq (one 18 month tour and a 15 month tour). During my first tour (2004-2006), I conducted multiple raid missions as a point man for the raid team. My raid team had the highest detainee and conviction rate out of the whole unit which helped with my unit achieve a service award. In October of 2008 (eleven months into my second tour), I was injured in a Humvee rollover accident which changed my life completely. Visibility was at zero loom that night and the insurgents were in the distance on horseback. We proceeded to engage and they led us into a trap. It was a deep ditch in a wade system covered by sticks and leaves. As the gunner of the Humvee, I was most exposed and at the top of the vehicle. As we rolled over, the .50cal came off of its mount and smashed into the front of my face then pinning me against the bottom part of the floor. Meanwhile, the extra ammo hit my back and fractured my vertebrae. I was ground medevac FOB Sykes which was five hours away. The medics said I was suffering from some major spasms from the accident. I still finished the tour by helping out with the radio detail and other little jobs.
In January of 2009, we redeployed back to Fort Hood. Readjusting to life was a lot more difficult this time around. I had my wife look at my swollen back and she told me to see a doctor. Work was too busy and I had to keep pushing it back. The next couple of months, the pain did not go away and became worse. When I finally did get the opportunity, my doctor (LTC Brooks) told me I fractured my back in three places and for the past couple of months, I was continuously fracturing my vertebrae because it didn’t have time to heal properly because of my workload. Due to the extent of my injuries, I was put on staff duty until they were able to transfer me to the Warrior Transition Unit (WTU).
In May of 2010, during a routine appointment with my nurse case manager (CPT Kramer) I had several grand mal seizures. I fell to the floor, where the nurses in the building came to help me. I was sent to the emergency room and then released. The doctor said they could not do anything because they did not visibly see it and to return if it did happen again. I do not remember a lot of what happened, but my wife (Maryjoy) told me the following morning, that she found me seizing next to the open dishwasher with a bleeding open wound to my forehead. We went from Metroplex Hospital Emergency Room to Darnall Army Medical Center. The seizures were not subsiding (about 30 a day) and I was admitted to the med-surgical floor. After a couple days, I was transferred to the ICU. I was exhausted and frustrated. I couldn’t eat or do simple commands. I asked the hospital chaplain to find the bishops of the Latter Day Saints to do a visit and blessing for me in the ICU. That night, I was sent to Scott and White ICU for further care. Dr. Lamancusa diagnosed me after running an ECG and other tests to diagnose Traumatic Brain Injury and Epilepsy. I was finally released. For the next couple of months, I was a frequent flyer at the emergency rooms. I have had seizures trying to do formation, during other appointments, but mostly in the WTU day room. With these seizures came many injuries, I have sprained my wrist from landing on it. I have hit my head on the floor (concrete, tile, carpet, and linoleum), several toilets, a couple tubs, some doors, and a wall or two.
After two years in the WTU, I was medically discharged. The facial injury left me with a deviated septum. As a result, I suffer from severe apnea, no air passage way through my left nostril and there is pressure on Eustachian tubes causing a delay in my hearing,
I have limited movement to my right hand due to being bit by an Iraq insurgent. I have a serve laceration and deep tendon cutting which caused loses of movement to my right hand My wrist was broken (‘boxer fracture’) during a mission, arthritis in multiple joints, migraines, light sensitivity, motion sickness, PTSD, depression and impaired cognitive disorder.
When I got out of the military, my wife had to quit her full time job with Scott and White Hospital as a nurse to be my personal nurse. She makes sure I follow up and attend my many appointments. She also makes sure I take my medication, have enough medication and refills.I have a great team of doctors (civilian, VA, and military) that help me with my injuries. My primary care provider is a Darnall Army Medical Center. I have a civilian neurologist. The VA takes care of my physical rehab for my back and my pain management. I also receive care for my Bi-pap needs from the VA.
Our finances are being managed by her. I am still not cleared to drive by my neurologist so she does all the driving for our family. She brings me to school, the gym, and my appointments. I volunteer for the WTU with their wheelchair basketball program and am a full time student at Central Texas College.
Haley, our 5 year old daughter, is going into First Grade this Fall and is involved with ballet, tap, piano, and Filipino cultural dancing. My wife works when she can (PRN-nurse at a Rehab and Nursing Center in Copperas Cove and a Histology Assistant at Metroplex Hospital when she can. Parole, my service dog, was given to me March 2012 to alert me of my seizures and get help when they happen.