“Our primary mission is to care for the troops,” he says, “but another part of our mission is to care for the children hurt by war. We’re over there to win hearts and minds and what better way to do that than to care for someone’s child?”
Between 15 and 20 percent of the patients cared for at the NATO medical facilities throughout Afghanistan have been children.
Dr. Walton joined the Navy Reserve two years ago. “I thought I had a skill my country could use,” he says. “Our country has given me great opportunities and I am privileged to be able to give back. There are still soldiers in harm’s way and someone needs to be there to care for them.”
As a lieutenant commander, Dr. Walton will report to his home base in Saginaw and will then fly to San Diego to do casualty training with others in his medical unit. He’ll then proceed to an Army base to complete combat training with M4 assault rifles and side arms. “After our training, we’re expected to deploy to Afghanistan in mid-Pediatric emergency medicine director readies for Afghanistan deployment August. We’ll be ‘sand sailors’ then,” he says.