Dad Of Dead Tracy Soldier Urges Army To Help Troops Fight Depression

TRACY (KCBS) – The father of a soldier from Tracy, who apparently took his own life on a military base in Afghanistan, wants the military to do more to help returning vets cope with the atrocities they see in war.

David Senft had seen combat four times, serving two tours in Iraq and two more in Afghanistan. His father, who is also named David, says he first noticed a change after his son witnessed a Blackhawk crash during his first deployment.

KCBS’ Anna Duckworth Reports:

“I assumed that he was going to get some sort of grief treatment over there, but it turns out he didn’t get anything,” said Senft. “He was basically told to ‘suck it up soldier,’ and get back on with the mission.”

The younger Senft was found one morning last November inside an SUV on a base in Kandahar, dead from a gunshot wound. He was clutching an M4 rifle.

His father, a military contractor who had worked on the very same base, says that even though the investigations are still incomplete, the truth is painfully clear.

“The trajectory of the wound, and the position of the M4 rifle that he was holding, it would have been very difficult for somebody to stage that,” said Senft.

The staff sergeant was buried at Arlington National Cemetery last month. His father hopes the case will spur changes so that returning vets get the help they need.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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