On January 29, 2006, ABC News Anchor Bob Woodruff was severely injured in Iraq when his convoy was hit by a roadside bomb. Woodruff, who was wounded along with cameraman Doug Vogt, sustained multiple life-threatening injuries, including devastating brain trauma. In his first on-air report since the incident, Woodruff tells the incredible story of his life-altering injury and miraculous recovery.
Through interviews with his family, the military medical teams that saved his life, and the ABC News crew and soldiers with him on that fateful patrol, we learn about Woodruff’s journey to Iraq and back and his fight to survive. Woodruff then returns to the field to report the stories of brave young soldiers and marines who, like him, are recovering from traumatic brain injury – or TBI – the signature injury of the war in Iraq.
Woodruff’s in-depth reporting reveals how the Veterans Affairs system is not adequately prepared to care for the tidal wave of wounded veterans returning from Iraq. In the documentary – which has led to Congressional hearings and transformed the national debate about veteran’s care – Woodruff follows soldiers, marines and their families as they struggle not only to heal from their wounds, but also to get the care they deserve.
To Iraq and Back: Bob Woodruff Reports was originally broadcast February 2007 on ABC.
“‘To Iraq and Back’ is remarkably compelling…Mr. Woodruff tells his story with candor and restraint, then turns the focus to men and women who return badly wounded from Iraq and Afghanistan.”
Alessandra Stanley, The New York Times
“While better medical care and body armor are keeping more fighters alive, traumatic brain injury has become a signature wound of the Iraq war. In a special report…aired on ABC, former anchor Bob Woodruff focused on traumatic brain injury as a serious and widespread problem.”
Judy Woodruff, PBS News Hour
“Then there is Woodruff, who went to Iraq to get one story, was badly wounded and after months of treatment recovered to find another: the unacceptable way that many who suffered the kind of serious brain injury he suffered were lost in a nightmare of red tape and going without the treatment they needed. The rest of us should have paid more attention…”
Bob Schieffer, CBS News
The New York Times, Alessandra Stanley
One Man’s Survival Story Becomes a Rallying Cry, February 27, 2007
PBS News Hour, Judy Woodruff
Veterans Hospitals Struggle to Treat Brain Injuries, February 28, 2007
CBS News, Bob Schieffer
“No Excuse, Sir” Is The Only Answer, March 4, 2007
Reporter, Bob Woodruff
Producers, Keith Summa and Gabrielle Tenenbaum
Editor, Daisy Wright
Director of Photography, Ben McCoy
Associate Producer, Susan Schaefer
Production Associate, Meena Hartenstein
Additional Editing, Marc Tidalgo
Sound Recordist, Carl Franson
Music, Ben Decter
Senior Producer, Kayce Freed Jennings
Executive Producer, Tom Yellin