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Wounded: A Legacy of Operation Iraqi Freedom Paperback – May 21, 2013
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About the Author
Part of his work is featured in the National Endowment of Humanities 2013 anthology Standing Down. This is a collection of significant works of military literature chosen to assist veterans with the transition to civilian life. The book comprises selections from literary giants that include Homer, Tolstoy, Lincoln, and Hemmingway.
Ed’s words have been published in the New Yorker, the Seattle Times, the Tacoma News Tribune, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and several international nursing journals. His war stories have aired on PBS, NPR, ABC World News, and numerous talk shows.
His writing was featured in theatrical presentations at Tacoma’s Broadway Center for the Performing Arts, and the adaptation Soldier’s Circle was performed at the University of Louisville.
Hrivnak was an instructor flight nurse in the Air Force Reserve. He retired as a Captain after twenty years of service. A veteran of the first Gulf War and Operation Iraqi Freedom, Ed also participated in peacekeeping missions supporting Somalia, Rwanda, and the Balkans. Combining his military and civilian flying career, the author has logged over four thousand flight hours on twenty different types of aircraft. Much of his published work is based on treating casualties out of the Middle East.
Prior to retiring, Captain Hrivnak conducted research for the Assistant Surgeon General’s Office of the US Air Force on the stress of caring for combat casualties. He has lectured at colleges, trauma conferences, and to international audiences on this subject.
The writer is married to nurse practitioner and three-tour veteran Lieutenant Colonel Jennifer Hrivnak. They live in the Pacific Northwest. The Hrivnaks have two children, John Dawson and Shae Marie. Ed enjoys his time off with family, skiing, and flying helicopters and antique airplanes. He continues to serve his country as a Firefighter and Volunteer Helicopter Rescue Pilot.
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Top Customer Reviews
I had trouble with Hrivnak's character (ethos) at times in the book, until I realized that I am not the intended audience. Hrivnak seems to be writing to other military men, men who could empathize and find his masculine perspective unquestionably relatable.
I learned much about "what really happened" downrange, much more than I "learned" from news coverage and even more than I learned from the short-lived FX television seriers "Over there" and the HBO series "Generation Kill." I learned about the attitudes, approaches, and ways of the military--something I've seen emulated in others I work with, research, read about, etc. but through Hrivnak's writing, I understood that his approach to things was learned from his career in the military -- this helped me better understand some of the people I work with who are veterans. I am thankful for this and many other insights.
I especially appreciated Hrivnak's ethos (character) towards the end of the book, about "aftermath" onward. This version of Hrivnak was reflective, analytical, compassionate, and his gender didn't conflate his ego in quite the way it did in other parts of the book.
This is a quick and engaging read. There are lighthearted chapters and darker chapters giving the book a nice balance. Moreover, Hrivnak's story is remarkable. I am grateful he shared it with us all. It is a gift to our nation's history, it helps us better understand our military-service personnel and what they endured during Operation Iraqi Freedom as compared with the Gulf Wa
To Ed and Jennifer and all of the veterans; Thank You and Welcome Home.
Those of us with multiple deployments know this is true, realistic training is a rarity for most units. He and his crew still get the job done. I especially enjoyed reading about his attempts at scrounging needed equipment, having done so myself.
Writing about the lack of situational awareness at the higher levels bring a knowing smile to those of us with multiple deployments. Managers pretending to be leaders.
My only complaint was his inability to grasp the bigger picture. His war was fought inside a C-141, but I don't know if he ever understood how he fit into the overall effort.
His frank discussion regarding PTSD is good. PTSD has only become acceptable in the last few years. Many Veterans avoided talking about their experiences because PTSD was viewed as a career ending diagnosis, RIV's honesty will encourage more vets to talk about their experiences.
I was, however, disappointed after reading this book. The focus is mainly on Capt Hrivnak's own personal frustrations and unhealthy coping strategies, and seems to suggest a continued dysfunction throughout the Aeromedical Evacuation System. There are many medics and nurses that have dedicated their blood, sweat, and tears over the last several years into improving medical evacuation system with many positive outcomes--including the lowest mortality rate in history. Their voices are not part of this book, nor are their efforts acknowledged. This account of a tumultuous 3-month deployment doesn't adequately capture the challenges and successes of the current Aeromedical Evacuation system--and someone could easily assume that nothing has changed over the past 10 years.
That said, I applaud Capt Hrivnak for his courage to confront his own demons and talk openly about both his experience and a difficult post-deployment transition. As an Air Force nurse, I know many fellow medics (including myself) that have struggled to process the terrible injuries we have seen and how best to move on with our own personal and professional lives after multiple deployments. Capt Hrivnak is a good example that it can be done well when someone is willing to invest the hard work to move forward and live life to the fullest.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was a great book! Knowing the author personally made it seem as if you were there with Ed watching what he went through. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Diana Trofimovich
This is not your average read. Real experiences and real feelings are exposed in this biography of a personal view of one war including the physical and mental struggles with the... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Nada
Hirnak's story of service in aeromed is one of the best books I've read. Excitement, horror, bravery, difficult situations, or soldiering doesn't always have to come from the front... Read morePublished 9 months ago by SCARECROW
I thoroughly enjoyed reading the book Wounded and recommend it without hesitation. The Capt. is a good author and does a good job telling his life experiences.Published 21 months ago by Doyle E Jestis
I went to COT with Ed back in '97 so I was very interested to read about his experiences. I feel that he did an excellent job conveying how the Air Evac system worked early in the... Read morePublished on June 6, 2014 by Bettina Simpson
Great personal story! This book really paints a picture of what the medical teams face in the theatre. Would love to see a movie version.Published on June 5, 2014 by Timothy Long