Mt. Everest is well known as the tallest point on the face of the planet. Just shy of 30,000 feet, only around 4,000 people have successfully climbed to the top. Plenty more than 4,000 have tried and around 250 have died in the process.
Now, two disabled veterans are racing to be the first combat amputees to successfully summit Everest. Chad Jukes and Thomas Charles Linville both lost part of their right leg during a roadside bomb explosion while serving in Iraq.
Both men want to climb Everest to prove that disabled veterans shouldn’t be pitied.
“Getting to the top I kind of view as vanquishing those demons, showing all these people that, ‘Don’t you have pity for disabled veterans because we’re capable of so much more than you think,'” Linville said.
The two veterans aren’t climbing together, but they will most likely cross paths while climbing. Linville, who has attempted the climb two previous times, is climbing with the help of The Heroes Project. Jukes is being backed by U.S. Expeditions & Explorations (USX).
Both climbers are trying to raise awareness for veterans with disabilities and are both a part of veterans support organizations.
Whether they reach the top or not, this story is inspirational. We work with thousands of veterans who have all kinds of disabilities every year. These men and women are capable of incredible things, despite mental and physical disabilities. We’re proud to play a small part in their recovery process.
Source: USA Today