As a nation we’ll spend the next weeks and months trying to piece together the details of the shootings this week at Fort Hood. One thing we know right now, which is the most important thing, is that four people are dead (one of them the shooter), 16 are wounded, and the lives of the victims and their friends and family have been irrevocably changed.

On behalf of the staff of the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health, I’d like to extend our condolences to the families of those who died, and our thoughts and prayers to everyone who has been affected. This would have been a tragic event no matter where it occurred. That it happened at Fort Hood, a community still recovering from the shootings of 2009, is heartbreaking.

My father was in the Air Force. I grew up on military bases. One thing I remember very distinctly was the feeling of safety we had. Outside the borders of the base, the world might be a dangerous place, but on base we felt protected.

That sense of safety was already ripped apart, at Fort Hood, by what happened in 2009. I can’t imagine how violated it feels now.

Our thoughts go out to the victims, their families and the community. We wish them all the love, compassion, support and understanding they deserve.


Dr. Octavio N. Martinez, Jr.
Executive Director, Hogg Foundation for Mental Health