DELAND, Fla. -- Disability or a desk job? Those were the options given to a seriously injured soldier from Central Florida. The military said Daniel Metzdorf, of Altamonte Springs, was 'unfit for duty' and offered him $2,400 a month for life, but he's not taking the buyout. He wants to return to war.
It was a strange time for Metzdorf on Tuesday. The paratrooper was being treated as a beginner. Even though he dropped from planes hundreds of times, the decorated member of the 82nd Airborne Division has gone back to the basics.
The reason instructors at Skydive DeLand were treating him like a rookie is because, technically, he is. The former Lyman High student is learning to jump and land with only one leg.
"Cause this is living life. Why should I stop? Because I have a prosthetic leg?" he questioned.
Metzdorf had his leg amputated after he was struck by a roadside bomb. He was turned down by the medical board three times to return to active duty, but didn't take no for an answer.
After getting re-certified on Monday, Tuesday was Metzdorf's first solo flight and, while he's still got work to do, it does prove that nothing can stop him.
"The human body is amazing. It's a miracle. You really are unstoppable," he said.
But, Metzdorf said, he won't risk being a detriment to his fellow soldiers just to prove a point. Still, just the possibility is amazing for a man who keeps improving by leaps and bounds.
Three members of Staff Sergeant Metzdorf's unit were killed by the roadside bomb that injured him. Two others were injured.
Even if he doesn't jump again in the war zone, he thinks he can help other soldiers and civilians as a counselor.
Aug 25, 2006, 9:30 AM
Post #6 of 10
Re: [cpoxon] News article: Injured Local Soldier Learning To Skydive With Only One Leg
[In reply to]
I can't remember his name now but there was a Para in the Freds back in the 80's who had lost a leg in NI he always went on the bottom of the stack when doing CReW. (Albert Hooker was also with the Freds until '83 after loosing his leg in a motorcycle accident)
(This post was edited by Skyrad on Aug 25, 2006, 9:38 AM)
cpoxon (D 11665)
Oct 6, 2006, 6:53 AM
Post #7 of 10
Re: [Skyrad] News article: Injured Local Soldier Learning To Skydive With Only One Leg
[In reply to]
In reply to:
I can't remember his name now but there was a Para in the Freds back in the 80's who had lost a leg in NI he always went on the bottom of the stack when doing CReW.