Mark Ormrod, Royal Marines Commando
Within a year I’d learned to walk using prosthetics and then found myself sit-skiing in Colorado on a Blesma rehabilitation break. It was great to get out of hospital and be with a group of people in the same circumstances; guys who’d lost arms and legs in action just like me. It made me feel normal again.
Mark Ormrod MBE was just 17 when he joined the Royal Marines. He was just under four months into a tour of duty in Afghanistan when on Christmas Eve 2007 he stepped on an improvised explosive device which blew up in front of him. He was the UK's first triple amputee to survive the Afghanistan conflict.
“About three months into the posting we were on a routine patrol when there was a huge explosion."
Mark was evacuated to the UK after losing his legs and right arm. Upon awakening, he saw Becky, his then girlfriend, and proposed to her, to which she said yes.
Shortly afterwards, Mark was approached by one of the Support Officers at Blesma who told him all about what Blesma do and how they would be able to help him.
We explained that there was life after amputation and that there were lots of other guys out there who were getting on with their lives and doing remarkable things. This gave him motivation and he decided that he wasn’t going to let his injuries get the better of him.
Just five months later although with painful and swollen wounds, he managed to walk with crutches and received his medal at a Royal Marines ceremony.
“I didn’t want to be an embarrassment to Kezia or a burden to my new fiancée, Becky. I used that as my motivation to regain my independence and push myself as hard as I could so they would be proud of me.”
Blesma helped him through tough times, and within a year of his injury, he went on a sit-skiing trip to Colorado with Blesma. The trip was run by fellow military amputees.
"It was great to get out of hospital and be with a group of people in the same circumstances; guys who’d lost arms and legs in action just like me. It made me feel normal again."
"When I was in Selly Oak I never imagined my life would turn out so amazingly. I’m very lucky to be married to someone as supportive as Becky and to have three healthy kids."
Mark is now an owner of multiple small businesses and is also a motivational speaker and travels around the world to tell his story about how he overcame his horrific accident. He has worked with The Royal Marines Charity, and other military charities where he represents each charity and the work they do.
His story serves as a reminder of the importance of supporting our wounded and limbless veterans.
Click here to find out more about his book "Man Down"