Here are links to our stories on Major Dan Gade - first, second and third. Dan was wounded in Iraq and doctors had to remove his entire leg to save his life. Since his recovery, he's worked for the White House, now pursuing a PhD, he and his wife Wendy had TWINS!, and now he's competing in Triathlons.
...Gade had participated in some triathlons and marathons before he was injured while stationed in Korea. About a year ago, he began training again, competing in a handful of triathlons where he did two of the three disciplines.
"When I got hurt in 2005, I really thought that that part of my life - doing marathons and triathlons - was over," he said. "I thought that endurance sports beyond swimming were going to be beyond my capability."
But Gade persevered, trying out a hand cycle which he uses during the bicycle portion of the triathlon and getting his first racing wheelchair for the running part this past spring.
His equipment is mostly supplied by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The Army is sponsoring him this weekend since he is an active-duty soldier. His other funding comes from a non-profit, Challenged Athletes Foundation and Operation Rebound.
"What is interesting about Dan is whereas some people would maybe give up based on what happened to him, he has really used this as a platform to reinvent himself," said Mike Lenhart, founder and president of the Getting2Tri foundation. "He wants his boys and his daughter to grow up seeing their dad, who may have what some call a disability, using that and still having an active lifestyle."
Gade swims without his prosthetic leg, primarily using his upper-body strength...
Go here for photos of Dan crushing the triathalon.
As a friend of Dan's, I can't say that I'm surprised. Proud of him, damn proud, but not surprised.
[Forget the triathlon, Twins would kick my @$$]