Life Or Limb ~ Recovering From The Traumatic Injuries of War


One of the things I love most about this podcast is the ability to tell amazing stories. And in the process I also help to raise awareness for some very important causes. With your support the Joy Trip Project has been able to back more than few Kickstarter campaigns as well as provide financial support to folks in need through Indie-Go-Go. And it was just such a request that reminded me of a story I did in 2008 when I met my good friend Chad Jukes. He’s currently looking for support to climb the highest mountainin the world Mount Everest.

“I’m a staff sergeant in the army,” Jukes had told me. “Back in 2006 I was running convoy security operations over in Iraq and my truck hit an anti-tank mine and ended up shattering my heel bone and breaking my femur.”

Recorded at during the time of the Irag War this interview aimed to explore how soldiers like Jukes were dealing with the aftermath of devasting injuries received in combat.

“After a few months I ended up contracting an infection a fairly serious infection in my heel,” Jukes said. “And when they went in to repair that they discovered that the infection had done a lot of damage to the bone. At that point they gave me a few options. And one of them was amputation.”

At the time Jukes was only 22-years-old and he was faced with one of hardest decisions anyone would ever have to make. Should he abandon the hope of recovering his damaged foot or allow the doctors to remove his leg from below the knee?

At that point I went online and started doing some research and ended up finding a web site called the adaptive climbers,” Jukes said. “And I went in there and posted on the forums with my situation. Within the day I received responses from Malcolm Daly, Pete Davis, Craig DeMartino and a number of others with advice for me, and just telling me what I could expect if I chose the amputee route.”

The guys who responded to Jukes’ post were all climbers, including my old boss and long-time friend Malcolm Daly. Each of them had opted for amputation rather than preserve a damaged foot or leg. In the hopes of continuing their lives in the most active ways possible these injured athletes provide inspiring role models for wounded soldiers to recover from the tragic circumstance of war to ascend to unimaginable heights. And in this flashback edition of the podcast we’re revisiting the process Jukes endured to put him on track toward an Everest summit.


Our theme music is by Jake Shimabukuro. The Joy Trip Project is made possible thanks to fans like you on Patreon. For as little as a dollar month you can support this podcast and many adventure media initiatives covered here. For details visit


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I'm a freelance journalist that specializes in telling stories about outdoor recreation, environmental conservation, acts of charitable giving and practices of sustainable living.

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