Winner 2010

The Cost of War: Traumatic Brain Injury; Coming Home a Different Person

In Coming Home a Different Person, the cost of war is revealed through the stories, photographs, and interviews of military service members returning home with traumatic brain injuries, or TBI. Expert testimonials coupled with interactive features provide some of the scientific and medical vocabulary behind the injuries. But it is in the stories of five servicemen returning home where we learn how the complications of TBI extend beyond the hospital walls. As one neuro-psychiatrist says, “When there is physical injury to this organ it changes the essence of who we are as people.” How service members and their loved ones deal with these physical, mental, and emotional changes is told in the stories of forgotten families, lost independence, alcoholism, and physical impairments. In these we face the immense need for greater understanding and increased education. While the official number of traumatic brain injuries has reached 180,000, a figure likely underestimated due to the lack of physical symptoms and the continued stigma associated with mental illness, Coming Home a Different Person raises awareness about TBI while providing resources and information for people seeking help. For its online project that educates audiences about the challenges of traumatic brain injury through a combination of storytelling, photographs, reporting, and interactive graphics, The Cost of War: Traumatic Brain Injury; Coming Home a Different Person receives a Peabody Award.


Executive producers: Whitney Shefte. Writers: Christian Davenport, Whitney Shefte. Narrator: Whitney Shefte. Photographers: Marvin Joseph, Whitney Shefte. Video journalist: Whitney Shefte. Motion graphics designer: Alberto Cuadra. Web designer and developer: Kat Downs. Story editor: Marc Fisher.