Featured Friday - Matt Lammers

July 15, 2015


Skydive Arizona is a big drop zone. No - a GINORMOUS drop zone with a lot of people from visiting to local jumpers, to staff, pilots, instructors, gr
ound crew, maintenance, manifest to teams, event organizers and load organizers!!! The Featured Friday series is aimed at getting to know the people that make Skydive Arizona work and rock

In this week's series and lieu of the Patriot's Boogie this weekend, Skydive Arizona is featuring a triple amputee who came out to do his first tandem skydive at Adventures in Skydiving. Please meet an incredible person with an inspiring story,Matt Lammers, SSG USA INF RET.


Photo by Eddie DePaiva

 

What part of the military did you serve?

I proudly Served in The United States Army Infantry. I first deployed to Iraq in June of 2004-June 2005 with A Co 4-31Infantry with the 10th Mountain Division from Fort Drum NY. My first Purple Heart occurred on 08 Sept 2004 along a mounted patrol in Taji Iraq when our HMMWV hit a multiple 155mm IED which hit our engine block and blew us up and over onto the roof. Upon returning home from my first tour I reenlisted once I made Sergeant, and was moved to Ft. Riley KS. My second deployment was with D Co 1-28 INF during the Surge in 2007 back to Iraq. I sustained my injuries on 10 June 2007 when a multiple array EFP struck our up armored HMMWV and blew off my left arm initially below the elbow and both of my legs above the knee. I remained conscious the entire time and was not allowed to have anything for pain due to severe blood loss. I was taken by another unit 1-26 INF based out of Germany to the CSH in Baghdad where I remained awake and alert as they amputated my 3 extremities without pain meds. I kept Praying and apologizing after cursing as the Doctors sawed through my bones. I am just happy to still be alive and grateful for every day on this beautiful earth. 😊

I hear that you swim. What kind of swimming do you do?

I recently started swimming last Feb in hopes of losing weight and getting back into shape. Plus it helps me fight depression and it gives me a sense of accomplishment and independence in the water. I don't need prosthetics or my wheelchair, so I love swimming 3-4 miles every day, Mon-Fri. My goal is to hopefully make it to the Paralympics. Regardless, I love to swim and hopefully this month I will be able to make it up to NYC to swim the Hudson River. My ultimate goal with swimming is to swim across the English Channel.

What inspired you to make a tandem skydive?

The inspiration for skydiving began when I enlisted in the Army Infantry however I was never able to go to Airborne school due to training and deployments. I would love to do more jumps with you all. It was such an Honor to meet you all and just be around the wonderful atmosphere you all provide. Thank you stood much for all that you do. 

Photo by Eddie DePaiva

Anything you'd like to say to encourage other disabled veterans? 

If I had any advice, (not that I have all the answers) for other Veterans or anyone hurting or suffering of any kind out there, is to not give up. It has been a wonderful journey and I wouldn't change anything about my injuries even if I could. I would Serve all over again. I was 25 when I was injured and at that time I felt like I was put out to the pasture. However, after many attempts at finding new healthy ways to fulfill my time, I do not feel that way anymore. I would just like to help as many people as I can with this life. 😊


Photo by Eddie DePaiva


Photo by Eddie DePaiva

A special thank you for your service, Matt!

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