Edward Ehnow was born and raised in Wisconsin. He lost his mother to leukemia when he was one year old, and his father to a heart attack when he was four. Raised by relatives and then foster parents, he said he was inspired to enlist in the Army by memories of his father. “My father was in the Army for 10 years and retired as a drill sergeant before I was born,” Mr. Ehnow said. “I grew up poor, and when I graduated from high school I decided to join the Army as a way to pay my way through college.”

Edward served 12 months in battle readiness exercises along the hostile border with North Korea in the Army in 2009 and 2010. He served another two years on active duty at Fort Drummond, NY, and another year there in the Army National Guard before returning to civilian life in 2012.

“Patrolling the border was stressful, because you had to stay awake for 24 hours at a time,” he said. “We were in constant training for an attack that could happen at any moment. We were in teams of four camping in the mountains, and in the winter the winds went right through you. At times, we were just 200 yards from the North Korean’s 20-foot high barbed wire fences and guard towers, and we could see right into their eyes.”

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