Steve Walsh

Military and Veterans Reporter, KPBS

As a military reporter, Steve Walsh delivers stories and features for TV, radio, and the web.

Before coming to KPBS, Steve worked as a journalist in Northwest Indiana and Chicago. He hosted a daily public affairs show on Lakeshore Public Radio and was an original host and producer for the storytelling project Vocalo.org at WBEZ in Chicago. He has been a reporter on Back At Base, a collaboration between NPR and seven public radio stations that looks at veterans and the military.

He is a graduate of Indiana State University. He spent a large portion of his career as a print reporter for the Times of Northwest Indiana and the Post-Tribune in Gary, Indiana. At the Post-Tribune, he was embedded in Iraq twice. He was also an investigative reporter and covered the Indiana Statehouse.

Ways to Connect

Sailors remove the lines off the bollard as the USNS Mercy hospital ship prepares to depart Naval Base San Diego, March 23.
David Mora / U.S. Navy

The Navy has suspended some activities and restricted others to help stop the spread of COVID-19, but the military response to the pandemic can seem uneven at times.

Veterans Jim Romero (left) and Ronnie Reyes practice yoga as part of their treatment at the VA Southern Nevada Health Care Center in Las Vegas. The newly opened center is the second inpatient gambling treatment facility in the VA system.
Steve Walsh / American Homefront

The Las Vegas center is the VA's second inpatient treatment facility for veterans, who are at higher risk of gambling addiction.

Spc. Afeez Amusan of the Texas Army National Guard, right, inspects a tractor-trailer alongside a U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent at the U.S.-Mexico border in Pharr, Tex.
Jon Soucy / National Guard Bureau

National Guardsmen who respond to domestic missions - such as providing disaster assistance or working along the southern U.S. border - may not qualify for V-A benefits.

Retired Drug Enforcement Administration agent Mark Coast says the agency discriminated against him and other agents because they served in the military.
Andrea Dukleth / KPBS

Federal law protects the civilian jobs of National Guard and Reserve troops when they deploy. But federal employees allege the government itself doesn't always follow the law.

Thousands of military personnel were deployed to the U.S.-Mexico border in the fall of last year. At the time President Donald Trump said their purpose was to bolster security and help reduce illegal border crossings.

Brig. Gen. Walter Duzzny, the Deputy Commanding General of United States Army North, speaks to a group of border patrol agents after a press conference in Sunland Park, New Mexico, June 6.
Christina Westover / U.S. Army

During the eight months they've been deployed at the U.S.-Mexico border, military personnel have had little direct contact with the people at the center of the mission.

Concertina wire installed by U.S. Marines remains on the beach near the U.S.-Mexico border fence in San Diego.
Steve Walsh / American Homefront

President Trump is considering sending a new round of troops to the southern border. The military withdrew some service members from the border in December, after they laid miles of concertina wire – large steel coils with razor-sharp teeth.

Dave McLenachen, the director of the VA's Appeals Management Office, testifies at a December Congressional hearing on wait times for veterans' benefit appeals.
C-SPAN

The VA fully implemented the new law in February, hoping to clear up a backlog of appeals claims that numbers in the hundreds of thousands.

In 1976, 13 Marines were jailed after they burst into a room at Camp Pendleton and attacked the men inside. The attackers thought they were confronting Ku Klux Klan members. But they had mistakenly entered the wrong room.

76 year old Army veteran Robert Neilson writes notes of encouragement to fellow veterans who have contemplated suicide. He's struggled with mental health issues since he left the Army in the 1960s.
Matt Bowler / KPBS

Veterans are about twice as likely as non-veterans to die by suicide. But the majority of those suicides are among veterans aged 55 or older -- whose military service was decades earlier.

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