It took Leo H. Connelly Jr. decades to talk about what he refers to as his “hidden scars of war.”

When Connelly, 67, who now serves as commissioner of the Mahoning County Veterans Service Commission and as commander of the Disabled American Veterans Chapter 2, returned to the U.S. in 1968 from a yearlong tour of duty in Vietnam, talking about those things just wasn’t “fashionable,” he said.

So, into his 50s, Connelly quietly dealt with the myriad symptoms of what would eventually be diagnosed as post-traumatic stress disorder. He wishes that diagnosis and treatment had come earlier, though.

“It would’ve saved me from a lot,” Connelly said.

That’s why Connelly said he “100 percent” supports the Significant Event Tracker Act, a piece of legislation introduced last week by U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Cleveland, and presented Thursday morning to those gathered at VFW Post 3538, 157 Lowellville Road.

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