The job Army Spc. Ryan McIntosh is doing this week requires a uniform of a different sort. McIntoch, who lost his leg in 2010 when he stepped on a land mine in Afghanistan, is working as a ball boy at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York City.
Because shorts are part of his ball boy uniform, his prosthetic leg is visible. But McIntoch told the Associated Press he doesn't think the audience at the U.S. Open will notice:
“I’m just a ballperson when I’m here. It’s the same when I’m in the Army. I’m just a specialist. I’m not anything special. I don’t consider myself a wounded warrior. When I have my uniform on, you cannot tell. And that’s kind of my biggest goal here, too.”
McIntosh competed against 600 other ball boy and ball girl hopefuls for a coveted slot at the open. ESPN interviewed McIntosh during the audition process, and I've posted that video up top.
McIntosh is making $7.75 an hour as a ball boy. His supervisor at the open, Tina Taps, thinks he's worth a whole lot more:
“He shines out there. And with his military background and sense of teamwork, he personifies what we want to do with these kids.”