He risked his life in Iraq, only to have thieves on the homefront almost take it. A Sand Springs combat veteran was viciously attacked last Friday night, outside an east Tulsa bar. The News On 6â€™s Ashli Sims reports Marine Sergeant Frank Whitlockâ€™s family thought they had lost him once before.
Whitlock was badly injured in an IED attack in Iraq. He survived that and returned to his family, who had no idea that they would have to worry about life and death once he was back home.
Marine Sergeant Frank Whitlock was honored with a purple heart for laying his life on the line for his country. Now the medal is on his wall and he's laid out, once again broken and bruised.
"For him to go in fight for our country and then come back here and have some little punk do this. It's just. You just can't describe it,â€ said Lisa Whitlock, Frankâ€™s wife.
Whitlock had retired from the Marines, had a hip replaced, and was getting on with the business of being a dad. He was coaching baseball and catching up with his young kids. Last Friday, he went to a buddy's birthday party. He had no idea that he'd need to look over his shoulder like he did in Iraq.
Frank Whitlock says he was leaving the party, talking on the phone with his wife, when two people jumped him from behind. Stabbed him 12 times in the front and back, smashed his head in, robbed him and left him for dead.
"And, all I can remember is a strange noise. I can't describe at all. I just know it was a strange noise and the phone went dead,â€ said Frankâ€™s wife, Lisa.
Lisa Whitlock says she didn't find out what happened to her husband until the next afternoon.
"And, they tell me he's been attacked and stabbed 12 times and his face bashed in. And, at that point I pretty well lost it,â€ said Lisa Whitlock, Frankâ€™s wife.
â€œI don't know what happened. All I remember is talking to her, getting ready to go to the house. Next thing I know I'm out. I wake up in the hospital,â€ said Frank Whitlock.
Frank was in the hospital for six days. He had to have surgery on his abdomen and his eye socket was crushed, but the 12 stab wounds missed all of his vital organs. They call him lucky.
The family which has already sacrificed so much is asking for your help tracking down the robbers.
"It needs to be done. The people who did it, they need to be caught. They need to be punished and they need to see the cause and the effect,â€ said Lisa Whitlock.
Anyone with information on the case is asked to call Crimestoppers at 596-COPS.
Watch the video: Decorated Marine Attacked Outside Bar