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It was about nine years ago that enemy fighters in Iraq capture -- then nineteen year old former private first class in a deadly ambush on the truck that she was driving.
Eleven soldiers died in that attack including one of her very close friends.
Of course special forces rescued Jessica Lynch from an Iraqi hospital and the initial reports from our government portrayed her as a hero who went down fighting.
Jessica Lynch denied that.
She said that she didn't shoot a single round in that attack.
Last month she graduated from WVU Parkersburg.
With a degree in education and today she's here with us Jessica Lynch former Prisoner of War.
Thanks for coming thank you for your service -- For I want to start with where we are now and that is at the end of this thing -- feel about that.
I'm glad all the tree CN especially in Iraq have gotten come home and they were able to spend the holidays with their families.
-- -- -- one.
Three and the rest of them -- out of Afghanistan.
And throughout the world.
You were you were a piece of a very large puzzle.
And it's probably not really fair for me to ask you to assess things but since you were there and friends who died there.
Was it worth being there.
I have different feelings about you know on different days I.
He announced certain days I think definitely because we went in there we got Saddam and that was our mission.
On other days you know we lost on many lives to mean so many.
You know Brothers and sisters.
Including women sitting right next to you now -- my best friends.
One aspect now on the -- house think any war is worth you know having our soldiers killed him.
When you were captured that whole government story came out.
View as one shoot him up rescuing everyone.
That's not what happened.
And you called out the government on its lies.
How to get the strength and -- with -- to do that.
I felt I had sealed because they knew that there is weren't accurate stories and I am I just wouldn't be -- -- -- myself knowing it's -- because.
One it would have been so easy for me to take credit because it sure would have you know there was -- -- those soldiers and that hum V and I was the and I wonder survive.
It would have been so easy for me -- to go along with their stories that.
That's not who I am that's -- how I was raised so I need from start that I had had to set these records straight.
It was -- -- 2003 and I remember vividly you're interview with Diane Sawyer -- ABC news.
And I was thinking at the time when if she'll ever get a chance to talk to anyone who made all this stuff up about her did you.
-- we -- -- in front of congress with the Tillman family OC member Pat Tillman sort of accept.
Pat Tillman I was.
CN FL player -- his.
Who gave up the NFL to go fight the war on the -- -- a story about entered.
Yes yes he was actually killed by a friendly fire.
And -- anyway we went to congress and we were able to talk with them and -- and his family was just looking for answers they can understand why the military and government was.
You know making up stories -- tempting is so.
I went on and you kind of just -- -- -- -- what happened in me.
Wasn't right at least I got to come home and tell my side of the story pat did not.
Have you had contact with -- anyone from that from the then government.
You notice is that it did all left town and.
I Phillips in the past I I've done my car in sunamerica straightened.
Now it's time to move on.
You said people to this day you were telling me the commercial break you meet people and they believe the government lies not your truth.
They tell they still today I still get it hate now you know people accusing me of me -- -- -- -- -- down why do I feel -- -- -- right now.
I don't I never want sad that I am.
You have from the beginning tried to set the record straight -- And I felt that's all I can do.
You were held captive by the enemy in a war.
How much of that do you recall.
And can you share briefly with -- us what that experience was like.
Yeah I remember all of captivity.
It was from that point and any ambush.
To the time I was actually captured.
But I was -- About three hours.
After the English -- after they had taken me.
So horrifying sight you know I didn't know where was I couldn't see they have taken my glasses on stripped me of all my belongings.
And I woke up and not like -- -- was I Iraqis standing.
All around me looking down upon me and and I knew at that moment something.
Terrible had happened and I wasn't.
And the right place I was weren't.
Space to me.
Well congratulations on graduation and you know what what what's next for private Jessica let you know.
And you know you yeah I'm actually am going to go get my masters I figured you now.
I made -- to the -- where I got my bachelor's now I wanna keep going and get my masters and now I'm not for anything we have several kind of opportunities in the work coming up and can -- -- And horses and you can't get there offenses and different things -- -- and on kind of a personal level and have some time an education.
-- I guess now I ain't gonna work with some of the West Virginia Department of Education.
Just -- different things make sure that kids.
Learn to read and yes just to separate out -- and take it one day at a time.
Good for you and good luck yes I know you don't like to -- the hero label.
But when you go to war and fight for your country you get kidnapped by the enemy and you come home to tell it.
Your hero thank you thank you appreciate it -- nice to -- you see -- well the economy.
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