(UPDATE) Let’s Talk About Inspiration

Josh Wege

Update:

At the end of this post we refer to the great segment the NBC TODAY show had on Josh Wege this morning, July 23.

Sadly, the segment does not appear on the TODAY Show web site — while all other segments are shown — nor anywhere else.

I and many others have e-mailed, “face-booked” NBC asking them to post the segment, to no avail thus far.

Will keep pressing and will keep you posted.

Perhaps readers can add their voices.

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Original Post:

Forget about glamorous Hollywood stars, forget about Hall of Fame athletes, forget about baby-kissing politicians, forget about “self-made billionaires,” even forget about “leakers.” In my book the following is what I call patriotism, bravery, determination and, above all inspiration.

Joshua (“Josh”) Wege was a 19-year-old Marine lance corporal serving his country in Afghanistan when, on October 4, 2009, while on “routine patrol,” his light armored vehicle struck a 200-pound IED.

The Fond du Lac County Marine lost the lower halves of both legs.

That was less than four years ago.

About a week ago, Josh, a top player for the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team (WWAST), was the star at the MLB Celebrity All-Star Event

ThePostGame:

Playing in a game that featured softball icon Jennie Finch and entertainment stars such as Alyssa Milano, Ashanti, George Lopez and Miss America Mallory Hagan, Wege shared MVP honors with Kevin James.

Wege hit a home run and made a diving catch in the outfield.

“It’s just amazing to be on the field with this guys,” Wege told the New York Daily News. “I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The fans were amazing today.”

Wege’s home run came against former White Sox slugger Frank Thomas, who was pitching for the American League.

“I really didn’t think I hit it that far,” Wege told USA Today. “He gave me an inside pitch, and I just pulled it.”

View and read more about his story here and here and see additional photos here.

The national Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team (WWAST) of which Josh is a member “represents some of our nation’s bravest and most determined heroes, soldiers and veterans. These young extremely athletic men have sustained severe injuries resulting in amputation while serving in the military/war, and through extensive rehabilitation, they have become competitive athletes again.

“Their armor now includes prosthetic legs and arms, along with extreme perseverance and attitude. Together they comprise the NATIONAL WOUNDED WARRIOR AMPUTEE SOFTBALL TEAM,” says the WWAST web site.

Lance Cpl. Joshua Wege is not new to the sports and athletic scene. He has participated in the famous Warrior Games in sports such as sitting volleyball, wheelchair basketball and took Gold Medals at the 2011 Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo., in the 800-meter dash, lower body classification, 200-meter dash, lower body classification, 100-meter dash, lower body classification, and 4×100-meter relay.

See the lead image showing Wege (left) and Marine veteran Sgt. Jose Gonzales (right) who also took gold in four events.

This morning’s NBC Today Show had a touching segment on John Wege. As soon as it is made available, it will be added here.

Image: U.S. Marine Corps

“Update” has been edited to correct an error in Josh Wege’s last name. It has been corrected. We regret the error.

  

Author: DORIAN DE WIND, Military Affairs Columnist

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2 Comments

  1. “In my book the following is what I call patriotism, bravery, determination and, above all inspiration.”

    Well put.

  2. Thank you Dorian. Nice to have a window opened into the real world and let in some fresh air.
    These guys are just incredible.

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