CPL Joseph Woodke
While on foot patrol with the 2nd Combat Engineer Battalion, supporting 3/8 Marines, Corporal Joseph Woodke stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED) in Helmand Province, Afghanistan on March 29, 2011. The blast resulted in the loss of both legs and damage to his right ear.
During his year and a half long stay at Walter Reed Medical Center, Cpl Woodke underwent several surgeries for his legs and ear.
Now medically retired, Joseph has become an accomplished athlete. He has hand cycled in seven marathons and is training to make the U.S. Paralympic Team for weight lifting. He would like to use these skills to eventually open his own gym. A mortgage-free, specially adapted home, he says, will help him with these goals as it would lift the financial burden. He is also looking forward to the wide open floor plan, which will make it easier for him to get around while in his wheelchair. Having an automatic door will be beneficial when carrying items into the home, too.
Originally from Michigan, Joseph just moved to Nashville for a warmer climate and would like to build his home near that area.
Joseph says it’s hard to put into words how grateful he is for the support not just for himself but for all wounded Veterans. “Good people like HFOT’s donors and supporters are the reason why we were all willing to go to war. We wanted to defend them and this country,” he says. “Thank you for the help and I hope you keep supporting this great charity.”