Hector Barajas and the veterans staying with him at the support house for deported veterans are establishing a new life in Tijuana — a life after deportation. Their stories are similar: Each was honorably discharged from the military, but was later charged with a deportable offense — for example, drug possession, discharge of a firearm or fraud. In some cases, the veterans say, their offenses were triggered by the post-traumatic stress they developed after serving in combat. Most have spent the vast majority of their lives in the United States and are now starting over in a country they barely know.
To read more about Barajas and other deported veterans, read our multimedia story "Deported Vets: Life in 'the bunker.'"