A disturbing and in-depth article about the Navy SEAL, who says he was the man who killed Osama bin Laden, was recently published in Esquire.
The article details the story of the Navy SEAL, called the 'Shooter' in the article, and his difficult transition into civilian life.
The article 'The Man Who Killed Osama Bin Laden… Is Screwed' opens with:
The man who shot and killed Osama bin Laden sat in a wicker chair in my backyard, wondering how he was going to feed his wife and kids or pay for their medical care.
“No one who fights for this country overseas should ever have to fight for a job,” Barack Obama said last Veterans’ Day, “or a roof over their head, or the care that they have earned when they come home.”
But the Shooter will discover soon enough that when he leaves after sixteen years in the Navy, his body filled with scar tissue, arthritis, tendonitis, eye damage, and blown disks, here is what he gets from his employer and a grateful nation:
Nothing. No pension, no health care, and no protection for himself or his family.
He’s lost some vision, he can’t get his neck straight for any period of time. Right now, (his wife) is just waiting to see what he creates for himself in this new life.
And she’s waiting to see how he replaces even the $60,000 a year he was making (with special pay bonuses for different activities). Or how they can afford private health insurance that covers spinal injections she needs for her own sports injuries.
“This is new to us, not having the team.”
“I left SEALs on Friday,” he said the next time I saw him. It was a little more than thirty-six months before the official retirement requirement of twenty years of service. “My health care for me and my family stopped at midnight Friday night. I asked if there was some transition from my Tricare to Blue Cross Blue Shield. They said no. You’re out of the service, your coverage is over. Thanks for your sixteen years. Go f*ck yourself.”
Anyone who leaves early also gets no pension, so he is without income. Even if he had stayed in for the full twenty, his pension would have been half his base pay: $2,197 a month. The same as a member of the Navy choir.