Army Private in basic training ends veteran suicide forever


(This is a satirical fiction story)

A new craze is taking the country by storm on behalf of veteran suicides- the pushup challenge.

Created at Fort Benning, Georgia by Drill Sergeant SSG Don Kirk, the “22 pushups” challenge originally began as a punishment but later grew as a method to spread suicide awareness for veterans across the country.

“There is this Private in my platoon, a total shitbird,” Kirk said. “I told him I was going to make him push until he could turn back time, so better men could replace him. Unfortunately, the new Platoon Sergeant said that was both a scientific and ethical no-go, so I had to stop.”

However, the idea quickly went beyond the bays of the Sand Hill barracks.

“I called SSG Kirk into my office and told him he had a good idea,” said Platoon Sergeant SFC Ash Hartford. “I told him that while we couldn’t turn back time, we could raise awareness for veteran suicides. We didn’t have the free time, but my wife was just coming down from another dependa pyramid scheme, so I told her to spread the idea of a 22-pushup challenge through the network she built.”

Shortly after, a non-profit organization -backed by several military high-interest loan companies- was founded in order to push for the reduction of veteran suicides.

The campaign has been dubbed the “Push 22 Challenge”.

Using Facebook videos and the catchy -albeit erroneous- statistic of 22 veteran suicides per day, the craze has gone viral, prompting schools and businesses to place entire classrooms and offices in the front-lean and rest position.

“The kids have really taken to it,” said Principal Lewis Skinner of Langley Field middle school. “It also gives an opportunity for our JROTC program to actually be useful. We have one who won’t even count your pushup unless you break a certain plane, whatever that means. He just kept counting ‘one, one, one, one.’ The poor kids passed out cold, but it’s for a good cause.”

Some people aren’t buying the challenge, namely veterans.

“Look, I am not even sure how this is raising money,” said Gene Hawking, a former member of the 75th Ranger Regiment. “It’s just a bunch of idiots doing pushups so they don’t have to bear any further responsibility for sending people to war. I mean, who is getting the money? Some nonprofit created by the CEO of American Freedom Patriot Loans? That NPO pays the organization head 100k a year.”

Despite criticism, the public seems overwhelmingly positive about what some are calling “pushup fever.”

“I think, like- it’s important to keep veterans from doing suicide and stuff,” said Skye Black-Spiegel of Burbank, California. “I was so proud to do my 22 and place the sticker on my car for awareness. We have to stop this suicide business. Until we do, America should keep doing pushups. It’s saving lives.”

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  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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