RALEIGH, N.C. - Spc. Natasha McKinnon survived losing part of her left leg to an improvised bomb in Iraq. Now that she's back, she's trying to find her balance in college life. Sometimes she can't recall a professor's name. She loses track of test dates. Occasionally, she forgets she has pulled off her prosthetic leg to rest her stump during a long lecture, only to tilt off balance when she tries to stand.
As tens of thousands of veterans of the fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq try to collect on their promised college benefits, McKinnon and others are finding that their combat experience complicates the transition from soldier to student.
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