On this week's episode we have the honor of hearing the story of Army veteran and Paralympic champion, Melissa Stockwell. She takes us through her journey serving in the Army, losing her leg during deployment, starting a family, running a non-profit, writing a book, qualifying and competing in the Paralympics, and what it has meant to represent the USA in a different uniform.
Melissa likes to say she was born a patriot. She joined ROTC in college and was commissioned as an Army. In early 2004 she deployed to Iraq and on April 13, 2004 her vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb and she became the first female to lose a limb in active combat. As a new above the knee amputee she was medically retired with a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. She quickly adapted into a life of sports and went on to swim in the 2008 Beijing Paralympics before turning to the sport of triathlon in 2009. She is a 3x Paratriathlon World Champion and competed at the 2016 and 2021 Paralympics in the sport of triathlon. Melissa says one of the best days of her life was winning a bronze medal in the 2016 Rio Paralympics. Melissa is the co-founder of the Chicago based Dare2tri Paratriathlon club where she helps get other athletes with disabilities into the sport of triathlon. She currently travels the nation for her career as a motivational speaker, owns an orthotic and prosthetic company with her husband, is a triathlon coach and most importantly a mother of 2 young children. She hopes to continue her athletic career with dreams of becoming a 4x Paralympian and competing in Paris 2024.
Melissa's Instagram: @mstockwell01
Melissa's Website: melissastockwell.com