SPC Harry V. Stokes

Amarillo, TX

Mission Accomplished on Aug. 20, 2022

Harry Stokes joined the Army wanting to experience the pride his brother displayed while serving as a Marine.

Having previous experience as an EMT, Army Specialist Stokes served as a line medic with the 1-23 Infantry, 3-2 Stryker Brigade Combat Team. Three months into his first deployment, on June 3, 2012, Army Specialist Stokes was on patrol in Panjwai Valley, Afghanistan, when he stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED), which was followed by an ambush. The blast immediately amputated his right leg and left foot. Using his skills as a medic while under enemy fire, SPC Stokes applied tourniquets to his legs and administered his own morphine until another medic came to his aide.

Once in the hospital, Harry underwent several surgeries to his legs and doctors eventually amputated his left leg below the knee. After enduring physical therapy at the Center for the Intrepid in San Antonio and Balboa Naval Medical Center in San Diego, Harry is now able to walk on his prosthetics for short periods of time. He says his family and close friends provided him with strength during his recovery. “Family and friends give you hope and remind you the world is bigger than yourself,” he says.

Now medically retired, Harry enjoys hunting, fishing, brewing beer, and spending time with loved ones, especially his son and two daughters. He works in the kitchen of a brewery with hopes of owning his own brewery one day. Though he’s come a long way in his recovery, Harry faced many challenges in his previous home. He often became frustrated because he had difficulty using the steps leading to his front door and he could not access many rooms while in his wheelchair. “Everything I used to do was ten times harder now,” he says.

Harry’s single-level specially adapted Homes For Our Troops home with automatic doors and an open floor plan mitigates many of the challenges Harry experienced. He is happy to  have the stability of a permanent home near the VA, enabling him to go back to school.

Harry says he is extremely grateful for his specially adapted home and promises to pay it forward to his own community. “I want to give back everything that has been given to me,” he says.

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