90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
Here and Now with Robin Young
Public radio's live
midday news program
With sponsorship from
Mathworks - Accelerating the pace of engineering and science
Accelerating the pace
of engineering and science
Thursday, April 18, 2013

Iraq Vet’s Advice To Marathon Bombing Amputees

Tom Davis holds his daughter Lylli with two of his other children Isaiah, far left, and Elli looking on in the kitchen of the Davis home Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009, in Fremont, Ind. (AP Photo/Joe Raymond)

Tom Davis holds his daughter Lylli with two of his other children Isaiah, far left, and Elli looking on in the kitchen of the Davis home Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009, in Fremont, Ind. (AP Photo/Joe Raymond)

Many of the more than 170 people injured in the bombings near the Boston Marathon finish line, suffered serious wounds to their legs.

That’s because the improvised explosive devices (IEDs) sent shrapnel hurling at a low level across the sidewalks.

Boston hospitals report they have had to perform at least 14 amputations so far.

Losing a limb is an emotionally and physically devastating experience. One day you’re whole, the next day – you’re not.

And people who lose their limbs – especially in traumatic situations – face a long road to recovery.

Tom Davis has traveled that road.

Davis was staff sergeant in the U.S. Army serving in Iraq in 2006 when a roadside IED blew up the truck he was riding in.

This photo provided by Tom Davis shows the results of an IED that struck his humvee in 2006. (Tom Davis via AP)

This photo provided by Tom Davis shows the results of an IED that struck his humvee in 2006. (Tom Davis via AP)

He lost his left leg above the knee, broke both arms, fractured his right knee and a vertebra in his back, cracked bones on his head and suffered traumatic brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

But on Monday, Tom Davis won the men’s handcycle race in the Boston Marathon, in a time of one hour, seventeen minutes and fifty-nine seconds – five minutes faster than his closest competitor.

We ask him what advice he has for victims of the bombing who have lost limbs.

TED Talk: Aimee Mullins: It’s not fair having 12 pairs of legs (1999)

Guest:

  • Tom Davis, handcycle racer from northeast Indiana who lost a leg while serving in Iraq.
  • Marilyn Wedler, therapy manager at Turnstone therapeutic center in Fort, Wayne, Indiana.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

September 18 Comment

Terry Gilliam Goes Back To The Dystopian Future

Terry Gilliam's new film, "The Zero Theorem" will be familiar to his fans.

September 18 5 Comments

DJ Sessions: Kansas’ ‘Retro Cocktail Hour’

"Space age pop" and "incredibly strange music" are the songs of the day on this installment of the DJ Sessions.

September 17 19 Comments

Volkswagen’s 300 MPG Car

The XL-1 can get 300 miles per gallon. The key is reducing wind resistance.

September 17 40 Comments

How Has The Obesity Epidemic Disrupted Romance?

The health impacts of the obesity epidemic are well-documented. Less studied are its ramifications for romance.