The most noteworthy hero in my thinking is MSGT. Gilbert “Mag” Magallanes (U.S. Army Ret.)He finished a 620 mile bike ride called the Million Dollar Challenge made on behalf of the Challenged Athlete Foundation (San Francisco to San Diego). I met Gil last year while I was on my Walk for Warriors. I wrote in my blog about a sargeant who was featured in the book, “The Only Thing Worth Dying For”, by Eric Blehm. In th blog I was lamenting my case, being tired, with blistered feet, a gale force wind in my face, and feeling my age. Within an hour of writing about my tale of woes, Gil commented on my blog, exhorting me to victory. He said, “You can do it John. The mind is always stronger than the body.” That phrase became my mantra as I trekked 2200 miles across America for wounded warriors and the Fisher House Foundation. Gil was with the first Green Beret Team to bring in an unkown leader into Kandahar to establish himself as the new President of Afghanistan in November of 2001! Gil survived several battles but fell to a friendly fire incident when a 2000 lb bomb was dropped too close to the team’s position. He suffered serious injury, losing a portion of the back of his head. Gil fights now with the affects of TBI, blindness, hearing loss, and kidney failure. He and is wife, Sherry, bolster each other. Gil climbs mountains, bikes long distance, runs in Ironman Competions. He does this to propel other warriors like himself to achieve beyond their imagination. Gil Magallanes is one of my heroes and he has inspired hundreds of wounded wrarriors to believe in themselves in the face of grievous bodily injury.
John Van Dyke Cote
Photo taken with then acting General Patraeus at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, Iraq, on Memorial Day, when Christopher and a fellow soldier were called to testify against a former detainee.
SGT Christopher D. Swienton served with the 1-505 of the 82nd Airborne from 2004 to 2008, with two deployments. His first deployment was to Afghanistan in 2005 for Operation Enduring Freedom; his second a 15-month deployment to Bayji, Iraq, for Operation Iraqi Freedom. Upon completion of his service with the 82nd Airborne, Christopher then served 16 months with the U.S. Army National Guard. He currently resides in Utica, New York, and is employed as a police officer. Chris is the son of Michael and Kelly Swienton of Frankfort, NY. He has a brother Michael and sister Samantha.
Mike Mobley will be live on MileHiRadio.com on Tuesday, October 18th at 1:00pm. Be sure to tune in as Mike talks with Don Marsh on the All Gave Some show.
About All Gave Some:
“All Gave Some” is an extension of allaboutvets.us and will honor those who have served this great country both militarily and through Public Service. Join Don Marsh, Viet Nam Vet as he introduces you to some incredible people and/or their families.
Click here to listen on MileHiRadio.com.