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DR. BOB BROWN: A Soldier’s Reflection Memorial Day 2024

A Letter From Michael / May 2024

Bob Brown, where do I begin? For years, you have promoted an idea that I adore, but I am not sure where to begin. None the less, In small batches, I’ve been writing what I am currently thinking, and trying to recall many of my life’s memories, both good and bad.

Years of putting nasty substances into my body have made remembering things far more difficult than it should be for a 50 year old. More so than anything, Doc, I realize that our memories are not everlasting.

I’ve often thought about the hours that Keith and Keyta sat in that small circle trying to find a way out of our own, poisonous minds. I would spend my entire check for the chair I sat in, the tiles our feet restlessly slid across, or the door to the room. A room that seemed insignificant from the outside, yet more lives were saved in that room than in a downtown Chicago ER.

Doc Brown, I still have your CD’s. Do you know how many times I’ve “Sat at the end of the dock with my feet dangling off the end”? I’ve often wondered how you emotionally handled a Job that sees souls come, and go. I know that along the way, you developed a “tough love” temperament, Lord knows you yelled at me plenty of time. I know your Faith always played a role in your day to day journey, as it should. But, you have always made an effort to keep track of us. Knowing you are still out there has been beyond comforting for me, Doc.

I’m not sure if my friends know the battles you had, on our behalf, with the bureaucrats in that building, but I remember. You were our Lawyer, our sounding board, our Doctor and our friend and Doc I’m not sure how to thank you. Your humility has never allowed for a public “ol shucks” moment but the way I, for one, am living my life is my expression of Gratitude to you. You never wanted plaques or awards; you wanted us to find our way.

The moral compass you provided me has, and will always, work. Thank you, Doc. You are a legend, a hero, a man of great faith that I will always Love. If I ever write anything, there will be a substantial portion of the book for you. Without those years of counsel, the last 15 years would not have been possible. That is for sure. Please stay in touch. You are loved.

– Michael

Dr. Bob Brown’s Reply to the Soldier’s Memorial Day 2024 Reflections

Michael, you cannot know how much I am touched, honored, and yes, pleased to be bragged about by your note.  The timing is the work of the Holy Spirit.  My wife of 70 plus years is not happy with me.  She cannot understand why I watch WW II movies all day and into the night, nor why they cause me to cry.  I explained they remind me of the brave Soldiers I loved at Fort Lee.  I told her the intensity of the love my Soldiers felt for each other was the healing balm.

She is in every way a wonderful mate.  She wants to understand, but I do not believe anyone can understand who has not been deployed to combat with them.

Once, I told the group I wanted to go to Iraq.  Keith said, “Sir you don’t need to go to Iraq; we are bringing Iraq and Afghanistan to you.”

As you know, Keith and so many other combat-proven Soldiers are geniuses.  I was 74 when God “spoke” to me in chills up and down my spine and tears in my eyes when He said, “I have prepared every step of your way here to treat these Soldiers. You wanted to be a Soldier and a doctor, but I wanted you to be a doctor to Soldiers.”

Thank you, dear Michael, a Soldier with writing skills I wish I had, and thank every Soldier God provided for me to admire, respect, and deeply love.

  • Dr. Bob Brown : May 27th 2024
Robert S. Brown Sr.

Robert S. Brown, MD, PHD a retired Psychiatrist, Col (Ret) U.S. Army Medical Corps devoted the last decade of his career to treating soldiers at Fort Lee redeploying from combat. He was a Clinical Professor of Psychiatry and Professor of Education at UVA. His renowned Mental Health course taught the value of exercise for a sound mind.

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