September 2nd, 2015
What would it take to get you out of bed before dawn?
Last week, Johnson & Johnson employees boarded a bus before sunrise to cheer on 12 amazing athletes — who also happen to be wounded U.S. military veterans — as the inaugural Triumph Games kicked off in New York City. These competitors are a unique group with a shared story. They all overcame catastrophic injuries to fight their way back to wellness. And despite the obstacles in their way, all are world-class medalist athletes in a variety of sports.
Sgt. Elizabeth Wasil sustained bilateral hip injuries while on assignment in Iraq as a combat medic, then discovered an unrealized gift for competitive swimming and became a member of the US ARMY World Class Athlete Program (WCAP). In 2014, she fell ill before a competition and was placed on life support. Two months later, still in recovery, she won a gold medal swimming internationally in Edmonton Canada.
Retired Army Staff Sergeant Rico Roman earned a Purple Heart, Combat Infantry Badge, Airborne Parachute Wings and Air Assault Wings during his service. He was wounded by a roadside bomb while serving his third tour in Iraq and had his left leg amputated above the knee.