CORPORAL NEIL FRUSTAGLIO
Mission Accomplished on Sept. 11, 2010
Marine Corporal Neil Frustaglio lost both legs and sustained severe burns in two improvised explosive (IED) explosions in Ar Ramadi, Iraq in December 2005.
Returning from a routine mounted combat operations patrol, Cpl Frustaglio, the vehicle commander, was quick to ready his team to assist the casualties of an IED blast that occurred in the vehicle behind his vehicle, ordering his team to secure the area and assist the wounded. When a second IED detonated, Cpl Frustaglio was thrown face down into the dirt with diesel fuel igniting into flames all around him.
Unable to feel anything from the waist down, Cpl Frustaglio began dragging himself toward the Quick Reaction Force team, pulling up to aid the victims. His last memory before waking in Germany is that of his body giving out, his vision failing, being carried by a friend and hearing him say everything would be alright. Airlifted first to Baghdad, Ballad and then Landstuhl, Germany, Cpl Frustaglio arrived at Bethesda Naval Hospital, and finally to Walter Reed Army Medical Center, spending more than a year recovering from his injuries.
Neil enjoys spending time with his wife Pam and their three children, Dillinger, Duncan, and Rose. His other interests include hunting, fishing, competitive shooting, radio controlled aircraft and rock crawlers and riding his specially adapted Harley Davidson Trike. He also likes reading and listening to music. He is on the Board of Directors for M1 for Vets as well as a member of the DAV and a VFW life member. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in communications from Arizona State in December 2016.
Cpl Frustaglio would like to thank all those who helped make his Homes For Our Troops home a reality and wants them to know that the ability to move around his home without worrying about accessibility is amazing. “Living in an accessible home makes everything easier. All the little and big things that I have had trouble with in the past I no longer worry about being able to complete,” he says. “I can do what I need to do as a husband and father, and that means so much to me and my family.”