A combat-injured Airman who lost his leg in Afghanistan has returned to duty- in the form of a Washington state firefighter.
Retired US Air Force Technical Sergeant Daniel Fye lost his left leg below the knee after stepping on an IED in 2011, requiring rapid amputation of the aforementioned leg and months of surgery to maintain his right leg.
After around two years, he regained the ability to walk without assistance.
According to KING5 News, the Airman was convinced to take the long road to recovery and vowed never to quit.
“I’d have people ask me, how do you deal with it,” he said. “And I always thought it was a weird question to ask. I deal with it because I have to. To me, there’s no other choice. You make the best of your situation. You don’t make excuses, and you push yourself.”
His family was more than understanding when he decided he would endure 4.5 months of gruelling training to be a firefighter, all with a prosthetic leg.
“If he can survive what he did in combat, he can survive anything,” said his wife, Nicole. “We’re just proud of him.”
Completing the course was a challenge, but there were some light-hearted moments.
“At one point, his leg came off while crawling out of the search and rescue trailer, and he just had the best sense of humor about it,” said Vashon Island Battalion Chief Cari Coll. “If you hadn’t seen him without his gear on, you wouldn’t know he had any physical challenges at all.”
For Fye, it’s all about answering the call to duty.
“Being in the military as long as I was, I really appreciated the job had some importance and did some amazing things,” Fye said. “I’m looking forward to that again.”
Fye will be attending EMT school in February, but will volunteer with a local fire department until he is picked up by a professional outfit.