Collinsville wounded veteran to return to front lines


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Reported by: Price McKeon
Updated: 9/04/2013 9:02 am Published: 9/03/2013 7:14 pm


A Collinsville wounded veteran is going out on the front lines again, but this time it is in the United States.

Sgt. David Blau is one of 18 wounded veterans nationwide joining a unique group called H.E.R.O. It stands for Human Exploitation Rescue Operative.

FOX23 caught up with Blau in Collinsville hours before he left for the second half of training Tuesday. The wounded veteran is training to enter a different war, the war on child trafficking.

Blau said, "It's hard to talk about as well as go back into it."

He has served two tours in Iraq.

He said, "Some things are better left unsaid."

The veteran said sometimes the injuries you cannot see are the hardest injuries to deal with.

It was clear. His passion to serve was not injured.

He said, "I volunteered to go to service. Now, I'm volunteering my time again to try to help these kids out."

He said he is the only one from the Tulsa area that is part of the non-profit group H.E.R.O.

H.E.R.O is made up of 18 wounded veterans from different military branches that are fighting for a new cause here in the states.

Blau said, "It's to help children, as well as teens, that are sexual molested by individuals. To protect them and to save them from the people that are harming them."

The veteran is also a father that protects his three young boys. He said he wants to protect other kids that cannot speak out for themselves.

Blau said, "It destroys me inside knowing that there are people that can do the things they do to these children from infants all the way to the age of 14, 15, 16 years old."

He gave FOX23 a picture that showed the group outside of Oakridge National Laboratory where they learned laws surrounding exploitation.

The veteran said, "We are out there trying to stop it and protect the children that are out there."

Blau said the website Protect.org has more information about the H.E.R.O. nonprofit group.

FOX23 learned the second half of training is in Fairfax, Va., for forensic training.


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