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Veteran robbed of precious war medals

Veteran Robbed of Precious War Medals
A woman from Massachusetts returned home a hero after a tour in Afghanistan ... only to be robbed of her military awards an hour later.

'She spent eight months guarding Taliban prisoners in Afghanistan, but just one hour after returning home to her family, specialist Jackie Gatti's military backpack was stolen,' 'Fox & Friends' reported.

Gatti is an Army Reserves Specialist honored with numerous ribbons, certificates and medals of valor, all of which were in her backpack.

Gatti and her family were celebrating her homecoming over dinner at a 99 restaurant in Chicopee when she says her backpack was taken from the bed of her parents' pickup truck.

WFXT reports that 'Gatti says she fell to her knees sobbing because all of the proof of all the hard work she had put in and bravery she'd displayed for the past eight months was in her backpack.'

'Things that I'm proud of, that I would have liked to hang on my wall. That one piece of paper that may be nothing but something to burn for someone else means really the world to me,' Gatti said.

Gatti's parents told WFXT they're offering a $1,000 reward for the backpack, but they're not the only ones trying to help.

Someone set up a 'Jackie's Backpack' Twitter account. The description reads:

'Army Reserves Specialist Jackie Gatti's Backpack was stolen along with her Afghanistan awards. Let's replace it with this Twitter backpack of thanks.'

The Twitter account is using the hashtag #GattiGratitude in hopes of thanking Gatti for her service.

She told WFXT some of her awards are replaceable, but the documents proving she served her country are not.

Join the discussion

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Blanche February 13 2014 at 7:22 PM

You people need to lighten up! Since she just returned home an hour before, I'm sure she wasn't thinking about the backpack she threw in the bed of the truck when she was picked up on her arrival. She was happy to be home and see her parents and wasn't thinking about the gear she threw in the bed until they came out of the restaurant and noticed it was missing. I hope she can get replacement certificates for what she has lost. I'm sure there are copies in her service jacket. Maybe she can get them re-issued. As for the medals, most can be bought in the uniform store. I don't think they are worth a $1000.00 reward, but I guess it is the thought that counts. She probably had other stuff in there that is not so easily replaced, souvenirs of her tour perhaps.

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John Blanche February 13 2014 at 7:34 PM

"As for the medals, most can be bought in the uniform store. I don't think they are worth a $1000.00 reward, "
Blanche you obviously NEVER EVER served in our nations armed forces. There is NO substitute for the actual medal or dolphins or other reward that was pinned on your uniform. Those have a very very deep connection to your soul. A replacement does not have the same feel as the actual one you received. The origanal has the imprint of who pinned it on you where it happened the smell if you will of the place. If I ever lost my Dolphins and Patrol pin I would be devestated. My dolphins were pinned on my 1000 feet under the sea and were stamped on by every member of the ships crew several of whom are long passed away. A replacement set would never ever carry the weight and meaning behind my Dolphins.

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mkg@uscga49.com John February 13 2014 at 8:15 PM

As a retired Navy HMCS who earned AC wings and the FMF designator I under stand your angst ! We would have never left those articles in the back of a pickup truck !
Bw safe my Bubble head Shipmate

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AOL WHITE VOICES February 13 2014 at 8:02 PM

I am so deeply saddened to hear of this. What may be a piece of metal to another person, was the sumnation of your bravery and service to our country.
While I cannot give your medals back, know that I feel for you and am so proud of what you have given or yourself, to earn those medals. Let's hope this bats turd has enough decency to send them back to you.

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Archangel28 February 13 2014 at 8:17 PM

Unless you're a veteran, or even a relative of one, you might not understand the meaning of the stolen items. I hope that somehow the items are returned to you and the thieves dealt with. I, and many others I'm sure, are thankful for your service and sacrifice.

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christine February 14 2014 at 7:55 AM

i hope she gets them back

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us118 February 13 2014 at 8:29 PM

give this woman her stuff back ... so sad!

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David S. February 14 2014 at 7:29 AM

Who leaves their backpack in the bed of a truck while they eat in a restaurant? For someone who did the brave things she did, she is mighty trusting.....

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bouleyl David S. February 14 2014 at 8:42 AM

Three adults in a pickup wouldn't leave room, she wasn't carrying a kids backpack for school books. Prayers and heartfelt thanks to Specialist Gatti and all the men and women who have and are serving our country.

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David S. February 13 2014 at 8:41 PM

Why would you leave a backpack in the bed of a pickup truck?

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1 reply
Localmotion David S. February 13 2014 at 8:48 PM

Why would that even be a question? Are you asking that as if she were foolish to leave it there in the first place because it may be stolen? We should be asking ourselves why someone would steal a backpack that was left in the back of a pick-up truck, shouldn't we? People have no respect these days. We are just another third world country with no morals. I'm not a religious person AT ALL and as far as I am concerned morals are not taught through religion. Maybe a good whack on the ass now and then may help....and even then, never have I ever had to hit one of my children but be certain, if they ever stole a backpack they would hear about it.

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mackkearney February 13 2014 at 8:46 PM

The American Way
As a people we have fought many battles for our friends across the sea
Now evil has come to threaten the American Family
They came with a plan to execute and destroy
Didn’t they know the American will cannot be broken by such a ploy
I use the word family for now we have become one
Joined by this act of terror before the day was even done
This was not just a terrible act done to those who have died
It is all of us but the heartless who watched and cried
We watched as people lost their lives as the World Trade Center fell to the ground below
But more than the loss of life it is freedom that took the first blow
Lives were changed for all Americans on that September day
We were awakened and made aware of the evil others live with each day
Where once slept a policeman, fireman, or EMT
The bed now suddenly feeling all too empty
Those professionals who gave their lives would not want you to cry
For they chose to risk their lives to help the other guy
That day there were many heroes who died
In each and every one of them we take great pride
For they fought adversity trying to do what is right
Despite many knew that they would not go home that night
Their lives will not have been lost in vain for out of this tragedy our country will rise
To those around the world who know us this will not be a surprise
For when all the commotion does subside
What will be left is the American grit and pride
Those wishing us evil hear our message loud and clear
We the people of America will not succumb to this fear
What the world will now see is America at her best
Each of us working side by side black, white, and all the rest
The people of this great country will unite
We will fight to protect all we think is right
We will seek out all those who tried to change our way of life
They crossed the line when they took out someone’s father, mother, daughter, son, husband, or wife
To all those who had the misfortune to think
That with the World Trade Center the American spirit would sink
Where once was an empty porch railing now flies an American flag high
That is our answer to your cowardly terror launched from the sky
Our message to you is run, hide, do what you must do
But remember we the American people are coming after you
With one voice we stand and say now it’s your turn
For our mission now is to send all your souls to hell to burn.

Jackie this doesn't replace you medals but it helps sum up what and why you do what you do. It was written by me as I watched the horror of that day. Thank you and your fellow soldiers.

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Richard February 13 2014 at 8:59 PM

They are replacable but from being in the service myself, replacements are not the same. I hope they find who stole her stuff and send them to guard Taliban prisoners and see how they like it. People today just seem to have no honor or class or good sense. What has happened to the Golden Rule?

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jimcsc February 13 2014 at 9:01 PM

thank you for serving our country and God Bless You. Someone will return your treasures!!

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