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Staff Sergeant Jose Luis Sanchez lost part of his right leg when he stepped on an improvised explosive device during a military tour of Afghanistan in 2011.

He says the incident caused him to be anti-social and he shut the community out.

But not long after his return to the US, he received an American flag, signed by people in all the places where the retired Marine toured.

The flag had messages of support and finally lead him to reconnect with society. Not only did he reconnect but he completed the fucking Boston Marathon.

Thousands gathered at the finish line and watched him cross the line after a gruelling five hours, 21 minutes and 56 seconds.

As he was running, he told WBZ: "I received this package of flag that was wrapped up and had a bunch of notes in it but I never wanted to read it, I never wanted to acknowledge it.

"Then five years later I opened it up and I read the stories and the inspiration which they wrote for me to get well, to get better. Instead of putting it away I wanted to fly the flag again in their honour; for everyone's sacrifices, and it wasn't for me, it's for everyone that's here fighting day in day out.

"So I've learned that throughout being angry, frustrated with all that PTSD, I'm channelling it to something positive to give back whatever I've taken away from the community."

It's not the first time Jose has put his body to the test after his injury. He completed the Boston Marathon last year as well as another race in Washington in 2015.

Jose was joined in an incredible show of conquering the mental scars of war by Earl Granville.

Earl is a nine-year veteran under the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. He lost part of his leg when the vehicle he was in was struck by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.

His guide Andi Piscopo was helping him complete the same Boston Marathon Jose was running in. But as the pair got 50 feet from the finishing line, Earl handed Andi his American flag and threw her on his shoulders and carried HER all the way to the end.

He told WCVB: "Never had I thought just a spur-of-the-moment thing would blow up like this."

While Andi added: "To see him accomplish his goals, it makes me want to do more. He inspires me to be a better person."

People took to Twitter to express how bloody impressive the feat was.


Good on Jose and Earl, it takes a lot to confront your demons.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie is a Trending Journalist at LADbible. His first job was as a newsreader and journalist at the award winning Sydney radio station, Macquarie Radio. He was solely responsible for the content broadcast on multiple stations across Australia when the MH17, Germanwings and AirAsia disasters unfolded. Stewart has covered the conflict in Syria for LADbible, interviewing a doctor on the front line, and has contributed to the hugely successful UOKM8 campaign.

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