Westerlo Native, War Veteran Wins Gold in Sled Hockey
Before he even turned the age of 22, Luke McDermott faced his most difficult choice in life: give up and feel sorry for himself or become the best version of his new self. In the way you would expect a Marine to do, Luke chose the latter.
In 2010, during his second tour of duty in Afghanistan, Luke's 1st Battalion 6th Marine regiment convoy was struck by an IED. Luke suffered the most significant injuries that day and his rehab would be long and arduous. Both of Luke's legs were amputated below the knee. His life would never be the same, but that didn't mean it couldn't still be great.
The Westerlo native who grew up playing baseball and basketball had never played hockey and, outside of watching Rangers games, had little interest in going out on a sheet of ice. In order to rehab his injuries, Luke was transported to The Center for the Intrepid in San Antonio, TX. That's where his physical therapist suggested he take up hockey. Sled hockey.
We'll let Luke take his incredible story from there, from Afghanistan to learning how to walk with prosthetics to winning a Gold medal at the Paralympics: