The hidden cost of war

Torrey Shannon's husband John, a U.S. Army sniper, was shot in the face during a 2004 gun fight in Iraq. Torrey and her three young sons left for 
Walter Reed Medical Center and were there for three years.

"Everyday you wake up and it's a new battle," said Shannon. "All of my care was going toward him and the children and I put myself last."

Financial, physical and emotional stress left Torrey desperate and pushed to the edge. 

"I did lose hope," Shannon said. "It's like being in an ocean and you can't come up for air. "

Not just once, but twice she tried to commit suicide. 

"Who messes up trying to kill themselves? I couldn't even do that right," Shannon said. 

Military support groups say Torrey is among thousands of military family members buckling under the same pressure of two wars.

The Pentagon tracks suicides among service members and veterans, but not their families. Now, Congress is asking the Pentagon what it will take to track suicides of spouses, siblings and parents? It would take about two years, $600,000 and then a half a million dollars a year thereafter to compile suicide statistics.

California Congresswoman Jackie Speier said a new look at suicide would reveal what support military families need that they are not getting. 

"As civilians we have no clue as to what it is we put the service member and the family through as they get deployed five, six, seven times," said Speier, a Democrat. 

Torrey Shannon is her husband's full-time caregiver. She is helping him through Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, traumatic brain injury and a list of other medical issues.

Her fight to help others crawl out of the darkness of depression continues. 

Shannon said, "We've been screaming from the rooftops saying we need help."

Torrey and other military support officials say tracking the suicides of family members will show the real toll of war.