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'Modern Warrior' is an Army veteran's personal recounting of his days at war

JAMES POLING/FACEBOOK

By GREG BURNETT | The Plain Dealer, Cleveland | Published: November 4, 2017

Army vet Jaymes Poling went into service at the tender age of 17. By 19, he was a machine gunner fighting in Afghanistan.

Serving instilled him with confidence, and he took on the identity of his weapon, he said in an email. But as time went on, he started to feel numb, the adrenaline he had previously felt while fighting stopped, and his personal relationships suffered. He soon came home.

"I still enjoyed my job, though, but at a certain point it became clear to me that I personally couldn't become the type of husband and father that I hoped to one day be, while maintaining my relationship with combat. So at this point, I chose to leave the military," the Warren native said.

Poling's moving story is the basis for "Modern Warrior," a 70-minute live performance at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday at Cuyahoga Community College's Eastern Campus.

Local jazz musician Dominick Farinacci has been instrumental (no pun intended) in putting together the music portion of the show. Poling narrates, as Farinacci and a team of musicians accompany his words with music.

"Poling and his close friend Marc LaBrosse, who also served, have been helping the musicians and production team understand their experience, so that the artistic output is an exact expression of Jaymes' experience," says Farinacci.

Poling manages veterans' affairs at John Carroll University, according to the website modernwarrior.org.

Retired Channel 5 news anchor Leon Bibb will introduce the program. Other musicians scheduled to perform include: Christian Tamburr, Jamey Haddad, Chris George, Jeremiah Napier, Jonathan Winfree and vocalists Shenel Johns and Orlando Watson.

The Eastern Campus is at 4250 Richmond Road, Highland Hills. Tickets are free to veterans. Other tickets are $20 and up.

For ticket pricing go to: eventbrite.com/e/modern-warrior-live-tickets-38853236075. According to Farinacci, proceeds will go to various veterans organizations, such as schools and medical facilities.

They will also help with the thousands of complimentary tickets organizers plan to offer veterans and their families as the show tours nationally.

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