Thanks to all that have helped!!!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Looking toward the future...

I'm contemplating taking on a new challenge. I have a few options that I am considering, all of which are very hard paths to walk down...especially for a one legged man. I'm ready to push to a breaking point again. I'm just not sure if I should go for the physically demanding route or the mentally demanding route.

Option 1:
I'm giving serious thought to joining either the Army or the Air Force; more than likely in the reserves. It is common thought that the military will not accept an amputee. I had thought this as well...but I was wrong. It turns out, especially with the advances in prosthetic technology, that I could join. It would take a very motivated recruiter, but it is a possibility. This would require me to learn to use my prosthetic to the max of its ability. I'm well aware of the challenges that I would face. I'm well aware that the prospect of failure is very high, but I have always regretted that I didn't join the military when I was "able."

Option 2:
Flight Medic...this is much more attainable. This route only requires me to lose weight and find an open minded flight service that is willing to take a chance on a paramedic that also happens to be an amputee. I've proven myself over and over again in this field, as far as ground transport I have realized that I'm capable of doing my job at the same ability I had prior to my accident. Flight is the next natural progression in my career.

Option 3:
Attempting to move from "weekend" activist to full fledged Amputee Activism. I've been blessed to be able to enter into some small venues to fight for our rights. I've spoke to the Kentucky State House of Representatives, I've been awarded a scholarship to attend Stanford Medicine X and then invited to participate in a panel discussion during the first day of the conference. I'm thinking of looking for further opportunities to speak and get the story out. Use my story as a jumping off point to show that with the right technology and determination there are very few limitations that can stop us.

Anyway, with the conference looming (just 26 short days away) I have been looking out toward the future and where to go from here.



  1. Prosthetic leg aside, there may be a number of additional obstacles toward option 1. If you don't mind me asking, how old are you, plus how tall and what's your weight? I saw you mentioned you'd have to lose weight to become a flight medic. To join the military, you'd have to be younger than 42, unless you have prior service, and would have to meet the military's height / weight requirement. Plus, obviously, you'd need to be able to pass a PT test to the standard for your age /weight, which would be situps, pushups, and a run. The run is 2 miles for the Army and 1.5 miles for the Air Force. Right now is also a really bad time to join since they're reducing the force and kicking a lot of current service members out.

  2. You know what I'll say...You'd be invaluable as an amputee advocate & activist! You have the credibility, the voice & the pragmatism that continues to inspire. You've helped me already by your example of demanding as good a prosthetic leg as you can use--NOT just whatever the pencil-pushers decide. We amps need someone to lead the charge in national prosthetic parity so we can each realize our potential in the face of these challenges. You da bomb, Joe!

  3. While military service is an honuorable thing, it doesn't suit evrybody. A lot of the time spent goes something like:

    Quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet,quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, INCREDIBLY LOUD, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet, quiet.

    Train your body as if you were going for plan A, focus your mind on plan B and if you can do a little plan C as well, then go for it.