He struggles to his feet, greeting visitors with a smile and outstretched hand. There aren’t too many 21-year-olds today who stand as a gesture of respect when a guest enters a room.
Vincent Mannion does.
And this reflects the manners taught him as a child by his mother Maura. Despite debilitating war wounds that have made it necessary for him to re-learn just about everything else, the manners remain intact, as does a sense of humor that shines through his dark blue eyes.
Mannion has what is called the signature war wound of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — a traumatic brain injury.
A private first class in the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, Mannion was injured one month into his tour of duty in Iraq. He recently returned to his family’s home after two years of hospitalization and rehabilitation, exceeding the expectations of those who treated him. Many of the caregivers credit his determination and his family’s fierce support as reasons for the successes. But this does not mean the war is won.