Army Sgt. Casaundra Grant, from San Antonio, Texas, lost her legs in a non-combat related accident while serving in Kuwait.
Sgt Grant was pinned under a vehicle that she was helping move.
She immediately lost her left leg, and eventually her right.
But she never lost her spirit and determination.
Casaundra Grant is a real survivor.
She is recovering at Brooke Army Medical Center, after having been treated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington for several weeks.
Sgt. Grant is undergoing extensive physical therapy and has been fitted for prosthetic legs which will enable her to gain full mobility.
She used those legs to applause and cheers at the return of her unit - the 96th Transportation Company to Fort Hood recently - walking to the podium to thank her fellow soldiers for the courage they gave her.
Sgt Casaundra Grant truly is a hero to her family, especially her three year old son, and to all of us who have worn the uniform of this country.
Pfc. Michelle Loftus, 19, was seriously injured in an attack near Baghdad Iraq in mid-July 2003.
Pfc. Loftus was trained as a combat medic and her job was to care for injured Iraqi prisoners. She arrived in Baghdad two days after U.S. troops took control of the airport this spring. Shortly before Loftus was to leave the base at Baghdad International Airport for a trip back to the United States, a homemade bomb propelled shrapnel into here face. She had joined six others for a volunteer mission to check out a road.
Loftus fired her M-16, not realizing the extent of her injuries. Later fellow medics rushed her back to the base where she was stabilized, then transported by helicopter to a nearby hospital. The first of what will be several surgeries to rebuild parts of her mouth and face took 2 1/2 hours.
Her injuries were severe but she is recovering.
PFC Michelle Loftus is a real survivor and a hero to all of us.
Former Notre Dame basketball player Danielle Green lost her left hand during a rocket-propelled grenade attack while she was on duty at a Baghdad police station. Spec. Green also sustained significant injuries to her left leg.
Danielle enlisted in the Army in 2003 and was sent to Iraq early this year as part of an MP unit based at Fort Lewis, Washington.
Danielle Green is reported to be recovering well and has been a tremendous help to fellow patients.
Staff Sgt. Juanita Wilson, 30, lost her left hand in an explosion in Iraq. Now, she is learning how to prepare meals and fold laundry all over again. Sgt. Wilson says - you quickly learn as an amputee in occupational therapy that things don't always have to be perfect. They just have to be the best you can do.
Captain Dawn Halfaker joined the Army's military police, after graduating from West Point in 2001. She was assigned to train the Iraqi police during the transition period after the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime. While serving in Iraq Capt. Halfaker and a fellow soldier sustained serious injures after a rocket grenade exploded into the military truck they were riding. Military doctors had to amputate her right arm after infection set in. She was then sent to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., where doctors were forced to put her in a drug-induced coma to fight off the swelling in her lungs and infection from her wounds. Captain Halfaker is now in rehab and was well enough to go home on leave recently.
Army Spc. Latoya Lucas, the mother of a two-year-old daughter, suffered a broken arm, broken pelvis, and mangled feet, but considers herself one of the lucky ones. On July 21, Lucas, 24, went on a "chow run," in Mosul, carrying breakfast to fellow soldiers from the 101st Airborne Division. A direct hit from a rocket-propelled grenade had thrown her from the burning wreck. The attack fractured her pelvis, snapped bones in her arms and hands and damaged her Achilles tendon. Shrapnel sliced into the flesh on her arms and legs. Surgeons at Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany called her husband, Mike, three times for permission to go ahead with the operations that saved her life. Latoya Lucas, who recently received the Purple Heart , credits her family. "My husband and my baby," she says. "They're my strength."
1st Lt. Melissa Stockwell lost her left leg above the knee in April when an improvised explosive device hit her vehicle during a convoy she was commanding in Baghdad. When she rode a hand-crank bike in the NYC Marathon she posted a sign on the back of her bicycle with a message to her Soldiers back in Iraq: "B Co., 27th MSB, 1st Cav. Div. Come Home Safely."
Her husband, 1st Lt. Dick Stockwell, pictured with her above, also of the 1st Cavalry Division, showed his support by riding a hand-crank bicycle alongside his wife in the marathon. She finished in 2:55; he did it in 3:01.
Life for Maj. Tammy Duckworth, 36, and her husband, Illinois Army Guard Capt. Bryan Bowlsbey, has changed dramatically since the afternoon of Nov. 12. That is when a rocket propelled grenade hit the chin bubble of the Blackhawk she was piloting in Iraq and exploded between her legs, according to the on-line journal her husband is writing.
Her copilot, from the Missouri Army Guard, landed the crippled Blackhawk before other crewmembers, air ambulance personnel and doctors began working feverishly to save her life, Bowlsbey stated. The helicopter crew chief, Spc. Kurt Hannemann, from Illinois was apparently hurt but "was listed as not seriously injured" Guard officials reported.
Duckworth lost half of the blood in her body, said the woman who had served in Iraq with the Illinois Army Guard 1st Battalion, 106th Aviation, an assault helicopter unit, since last March. All three bones in her right arm were broken but have since been pinned and plated together.
Nearly all of her right leg has been amputated, and she has lost her left leg beneath the knee. Her left leg will be fitted with a prosthesis, and Duckworth is grasping at every hope that she can also be fitted with a right-leg prosthesis, her husband explained, so she can again fly helicopters or fixed-wing airplanes or at least remain in the Army Guard. (From story by U.S. Army Master Sgt. Bob Haskell , National Guard Bureau)
Update on Major Duckworth: Jan. 13, 2006 - Maj. Tammy Duckworth, Illinois Army National Guard, has announced that she is running as a Democrat for a Congressional seat representing Chicago's western suburbs, replacing Republican Henry Hyde, who is retiring after 32 years.
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