- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A U.S. veteran who lost all four of his limbs when he was hit by an improvised explosive device during one of his three tours in Afghanistan now says he’s “just a guy living life” — a humbling sentiment that captured even the attention of Mike Rowe, star of the TV show “Dirty Jobs.”

“He has a motto,” Mr. Rowe wrote on his Facebook page on Memorial Day, in honor of retired U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Travis Mills. “Never give up — never quit. He has a Foundation. He’s featured in a new documentary. He also has a wife and a kid and a deeply personal commitment to help other wounded vets cope with their injuries. But when I asked him why I hadn’t seen him in any of the typical commercials and PSAs for wounded veterans, his answer was stunning. He said he didn’t consider himself to be wounded. ‘I’m not a victim, Mike. And I refuse to be portrayed that way. Case closed.’ “

Still, Staff Sgt. Mills said his first reaction during his injury was to wave the battlefield medic away.

“I was yelling at the medic, ‘Get away from me,’ because I thought I was done,” he said, CNN reported.

But after months of treatment and recovery at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the hero has a new lease on life — albeit with no arms and no legs.

“I’m not wounded any more,” he said, CNN reported. “I’m just a guy living life.”

Mr. Mills now snowboards, bikes and just recently jumped from an airplane with the U.S. Army Golden Knights parachute team.

Mr. Rowe wrapped in his Facebook post: “That’s called a gut-check and I could use one from time to time. Especially on Memorial Day, when the biggest decisions I face are what to grill and which type of frosty beverage to enjoy. This year, as I resolve these and other important issues, I’ll think of Travis Mills.”

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