Sunday Spotlight: Bob Woodruff on Iraq

ABC News' Bob Woodruff reflects on the 10-year anniversary of the Iraq War.
3:00 | 03/17/13

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Transcript for Sunday Spotlight: Bob Woodruff on Iraq
♪ I got journey on ♪ that's 21-year-old lance corporal tim donnelly, u.S. Marine corps. Double amputee. Singing with a band of wounded warriors at the standup to hero event in new york city. This week marks the ten-year anniversary of the invasion of iraq. A conflict that left 4,488 americans dead. And more than 32,000 wounded. We asked our own bob woodruff, who was there during the ground invasion, to take a personal look at the decade of war in our "sunday spotlight." Reporter: It's hard to imagine that it was ten years ago, what a decade it has been for the u.S. Military and a personal journey for me. My team was imbedded with the marines when the war began. All of us were ordered to wear chemical suits in protection from weapons of mass destruction which we later learned didn't exist. Many of us witnessed tragedy. Loss friends. He was a marine sniper in the unit that I was imbedded with. The 20-year-old was killed just days into the invasion. Stepping on an artillery shell. My war reporting in iraq ended suddenly, less than three years after it began, struck by an ied. An unconscious for 36 days. So, I joined together with the hundreds of thousands of service members who survived, but remain wounded. The war would continue without us, getting far worse than anyone ever imagined. Listening to the soldiers tell you that, hey, tell your brother that I love you. Watching his eyes roll back in his head that he's real close to dying. Reporter: When president obama took office in 2008, he vowed to bring all of the troops home. Three years later, he did. My colleague martha raddatz was with the army on a dusty base in southern iraq as they made their final preparations to leave the long war behind. The last daylight these soldiers will see in iraq. Reporter: Crossing through the border, reflection turned to joy. We made it! I love you guys! We'll be home in like a week, can't wait! Reporter: Back home the healing began for those who survived. And for the families of those who did not. This week, martha sat down with retired general peter chiarelli who served two tours in iraq and wrote more than 500 letters of condolences. He has his own kind of scars. What would you think when you writing those letters? You're tearing me apart. You really are. Ten years is a good place to remember this stuff. But, that's really tough. So you have to ask the question, and I know it's a simple cliche question that everyone says, was it worth it? Well, I got to believe it's worth it. Bob's experience in iraq and his serious injuries compelled him and his family to form a foundation to help wounded veterans, espeally those with traumatic brain injury and posttraumatic stress. Bob joins us now. Welcome, bob. It's great to have you here. Since the wars in iraq and afghanistan, there have been at least 126,000 cases of traumatic brain injury. And 70,000 of ptsd. Is the country ready for it? What can we do with all of these veterans coming home? Well, first of all, are we ready? Certainly a lot better than ten years ago. We didn't know the kinds of injuries and how to deal with them like the ones from the ied. The lives have been saved. But those who have come back have invisible injuries with ptsd. And tbi, traumatic injury. The numbers are going to be increasing. We have both spent so much time with these wounded veterans, what do they want? How do you want to be treated by america? How do you they want to be integrated? Integrated is probably the right word. They don't want to be called heroes a lot. They wanted to be treat like others in the neighborhood. If people want to help them, do it in your community, try to become friends. There's a wall between 99% of us who are civilians and the 1% who have served in these two wars, we need to bring them together as friends. Because that's the best way for them on their recovery. I got to say, bob, your recovery still makes me tear up every time I see you and you have done remarkable work with these veterans thanks very much. Bob's organization is called the bob woodruff foundation. You can find it at remind.Org. And now, we honor our fellow americans who serve and sacrifice. This week, the pentagon released the names of nine service members killed in afghanistan.Released the names of nine service members killed in afghanistan. That's all for us today. Thanks for sharing part of your sunday with us. Check out "world news" with david muir tonight. George is back next week. And we hope you will be, too. And we hope you will be, too.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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