Author: Kristy

Luke Wilson has served his country since an early age. “I joined the Oregon Army National Guard when I was a junior in high school, and I loved it,” Luke says.

“Then during my senior year, I opted to get a conditional release from the Guard and go active duty. I spent three years on active duty, and when I was discharged, I rejoined the Oregon National Guard.”

It was those three years on active duty as an Army Ranger that largely made Luke Wilson who he is today. “We went over to Iraq expecting the worst,” Luke says. “Unfortunately, that’s pretty much what we got. It was hot. It was dusty. I learned I don’t like getting shot at.”

Luke’s convoy was on patrol in southern Baghdad on April 8, 2004 when the front of the convoy got hit with an improvised explosive device (IED). Then the insurgents opened up on them with small arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades. After a flash of bright, white light, Luke realized his left leg was gone. Yet he continued firing on the enemy.

Luke’s leg was amputated in the combat support hospital in Baghdad’s Green Zone. He ultimately landed at Walter Reed Army Medical Center and endured nearly a dozen operations.

The support Luke received early on from Wounded Warrior Project® let him know his country cared for his well-being. “Wounded Warrior Project made contact with me when I was still at Walter Reed,” he says. “When I arrived there, I had nothing but a hospital gown, so getting the Wounded Warrior Project backpack really meant a lot to me.”

After rehab came adjustment to Luke’s new life back in his hometown of Hermiston, Oregon. “I came home. I got married, had a couple of kids. And I dove back into school and work,” says Luke.

Now he’s also looking forward to getting more involved with Wounded Warrior Project by sharing his stories and experiences with other service members who have returned home wounded. “If I can help anybody else, that’s a good thing. At the same time, those guys are helping me, too.”

Luke’s lifelong service to his country continues today and every day, through his work with Wounded Warriors.

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