Attired in a t-shirt, cargo shorts and flip flops, 23-year-old Nelson Algarin looks like a typical college student. His confident smile and clean-cut good looks belie his troubled past as a former Marine struggling with personal demons. As he tells his story, he strokes the dog tags around his neck, those of a fallen comrade.
Algarin’s return from Afghanistan began promisingly with a heartwarming welcome home and the excitement of returning to civilian life. Unfortunately, things began to unravel quickly. He soon found himself caught between living in the present and not being able to let go of the memories of the past. These memories included being shot in the back and losing two of his closest friends to war. In addition, he found he had difficulty relating to family and friends who seemed to view him differently.