Wounded vets have something to celebrate, their 'Alive Day'

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CBS News spotlights Iraq war vet Ryan Kules, who is a double amputee, and the man who taught him to celebrate his ‘Alive Day’: Jim Mayer, of the Wounded Warrior Project.

Mayer, also known as the ‘Milkshake Man‘ for the frosty drinks he delivers to hospitalized vets, himself began to celebrate his ‘Alive Day’ after his legs were blown off in Vietnam.

Kules was recovering at Walter Reed from the IED blast that took his leg and arm when he met Kules. Kules gave him a milkshake–vanilla–and told him about the importance of celebrating the day he was hurt and survived.

“The whole concept of turning it around, and making it an alive day,” Mayer said, “to a certain extent, the more severe your injuries, the more thankful that you’re alive.”

For Kules, Nov. 29, 2005 was a bittersweet day. Two of his fellow soldiers, Jerry Mills and Donald Hasse, were lost to their families. Kules lived to start one of his own. All three of the Kules’ children were conceived after he was wounded.

Was the day of the roadside bomb attack the worst day of his life? “That’s a hard question,” Kules said. “The injury and the things that I’ve done since my injury have made me who I am. And we are in a better place because of it.”

[via CBS News]
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