Friday, August 13, 2010

Inspiration: 3 Veterans, 1 Leg and Mount Kilimanjaro

About a month a go I started running. I had been walking 3+ miles a day with the baby (track & trails) and my goal was to get to 13 minute miles... I was wary of becoming one of those stern-faced power walker chicks, so I decided needed to bite the bullet and to run. I have yet to experience the 'runner's high' I've always heard about. But, if there's a 'runner's dread'...that I've had. So, I was humbled to read about these three veterans and will use their story as inspiration and motivation on days my knees or feet hurt...

"When U.S. Army Sgt. Neil Duncan got taken apart in the highlands of Afghanistan in 2005 -- his vehicle ran over a buried explosive and it "blew up right under me" -- he really wasn't picturing life without his legs.

Five years later, the double amputee is calling from a hotel in Arusha, Tanzania. His arms ache; so do his stumps.

He and two other former soldiers, three men with one leg between them, have just come down from summiting 19,340-foot Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa. You read correctly: Three soldiers, one leg. Mountain climb.

The trio of Duncan (a 26-year-old Minnesotan, now in college in Colorado) and former Army sergeants Dan Nevins (39, lost both legs in Iraq, native of California) and Kirk Bauer (62, lost one leg in Vietnam, lives in Ellicott City) made their six-day ascent as part of the Warfighter Sports Challenge, a series of seven extreme events for permanently disabled veterans..." (source)

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