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VA Palo Alto Health Care System

 

Out of the Ashes, I Come

Colonel David Rabb, Director of VHA Diversity and Inclusion Office

Colonel David Rabb, Director of VHA Diversity and Inclusion Office

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Colonel David Rabb is the Director of VHA Diversity and Inclusion Office, and has worked for the VA for over 30 years. Rabb is a graduate of Leadership VA (class of 2006).

On this Veterans Day, we share one of his poems. His work is based on his experiences during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The poems capture the dedication, devotion, and determination to complete the mission and stay alive during tumultuous times.

Out of the Ashes, I Come

Knocked down by the tragic events of this day that forever changed the course of my life...out of the ashes, I come.
Though scared by the evil and sore from the pain, in spirit, I take one step forward...out of the ashes, I come.
Off centered and confused in the direction I should take, I sometimes wonder if my faith will keep me afloat...out of the ashes, I come.
Moved by the loving-kindness that surrounds me, hoping it will soothe the hurt and anger within me...out of the ashes, I come.
I come into this new day. How temporal and precious life is.

David Rabb, 2015
Colonel David Rabb is the Commander of the 113th Medical Detachment - Combat Stress Control - located in Garden Grove, CA. The primary mission of a combat stress control unit is to treat Soldiers with operational combat stress, grief and loss, and battle fatigue. In July 2012, his unit returned from a one-year deployment to Afghanistan. Prior to this assignment, Rabb served on active duty as the Director of Psychological Health for the 63rd Regional Support Command in Mountain View, CA, 2009-2011. His primary responsibility was to maintain oversight of the psychological health of 40,000 Reserve Soldiers in units located in a seven-state southwest region that were either deploying to war or returning from war. From 2007 to 2009, he served as the U.S. Army Western Region Medical Command Care and Transition Coordinator and worked at the VA Palo Alto Health Care System as a VA/DoD Military Liaison. From 2004 to 2005, Rabb served in Iraq as Commander of the 785th. From 1976 to 1980, he served on active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps (Sergeant, Infantry).

For additional information on the experience of Veterans at war, visit 100 Faces of War Experience.

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