Friday, August 13, 2010
With one good leg, US veterans climb Mount Kilimanjaro
Three US amputee veterans have climbed Mt Kilimanjaro, enduring tumbles and sores to reach Africa's highest peak with only one good leg among them.
The veterans - of Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq - hiked to the top of the 5,891m (19,330ft) high Tanzanian mountain in six days to show that disability need not lead to inactivity. The trip typically takes five or six days, and the men had to stop frequently to adjust their titanium prosthetic legs, as they slipped constantly on the loose scree-covered paths. The hikers were Dan Nevins, 37, who lost his legs in Iraq; Neil Duncan, 26, who lost both legs in a roadside bomb attack in Afghanistan in 2005; and Kirk Bauer, 62, who lost a leg in Vietnam in 1969. "If three amputees from three different wars and two different generations with literally one good leg can climb Kilimanjaro, our other disabled friends can get out and go hiking or go biking or swim a mile, can get out and lead a healthy life," Mr Bauer told the Associated Press news agency. Mr Nevins developed a bad sore on one of his stumps and after reaching the peak was evacuated on a wheeled stretcher. Mr Bauer is executive director of Disabled Sports USA, a Washington DC-area organisation that promotes physical fitness and sport participation for individuals with disabilities... BBC