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Iraq War POW tells her story

Shoshana Johnson speaks about her time as a prisoner of war. / Jessica Fairley


Friday is National Prisoner of War-Missing in Action Recognition Day.

Iraq War hero and former prisoner of war, Shoshana Johnson, made a stop in southwest Georgia to tell her story.

Days into her tour in Iraq back in 2003, Johnson's convoy was ambushed. Eleven people in her group died, six were captured and Johnson suffered from leg wounds after being shot in the ankle.

"I'm still struggling. I know a lot of veterans who are still struggling but I'm here and I'm kicking and I'm going to keep on marching forward as best I can," said Shoshana Johnson, a Purple Heart recipient.

She spent 22 days in captivity with the freedom that she loved taken away.

"I had to ask to go to the bathroom and somebody had to take me and I didn't know if I was going to eat that day and it wasn't because I couldn't get up and take care of myself. It was because I wasn't allowed to," explained Johnson.

People both young and old sat in the crowd glued to what the American hero had to say. For some of the adults, they remember Shoshana's struggle but it's the youth that organizers want to educate.

"It's really important for our young POW's like Shoshana Johnson to be able to reach out to those younger generations, the younger people and really let them know what it's like to put your heart and soul into something that you truly believe in," said Mary Chantag, Board Member of The Ride Home.

This lesson is something Johnson preaches not only the kids around her, but her own daughter.

The former prisoner of war says it's only now that her child understands the importance of her journey.

Ten years after her rescue, Shoshana's still grateful for the men who brought her to safety.

"I don't think they will ever understand what it really felt like to have those marines come busting through the door and rescue you," said Johnson.

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