The word "labor" means a lot of things to a lot of different people. It can mean struggling through a physical miracle for 72 hours to bring a child into the world. Or working in a thankless job to make sure your children have a better future than you did. And for quadruple amputee Army Staff Sgt. Travis Mills, it meant doing what seemed like the impossible.
But he did it anyway.
According to TravisMills.org:
Travis has said all along that he would be there standing tall when his fellow soldiers in the 82nd Airborne returned, and he stayed true to his word.
A little background: Mills was on his third deployment with the 82nd Airborne Division, based in Fort Bragg, North Carolina when he suffered catastrophic injuries during an IED blast on April 10. Mills lost all four limbs - and is just one of five people in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars to survive a quadruple amputation, according to the Army Times.
Mills started rehab in May at Walter Reed in Bethesda, and has been working tirelessly to adjust to life with prosthetic arms and legs. He's had the constant support of his wife Kelsey, toddler daughter Chloe, and more than 20,000 fans who follow his progress on Facebook.
So when the 82nd Airborne Division returned home this weekend, Mills made sure he was standing tall, literally, to greet his fellow soldiers.
Travis told the Dallas Morning News:
“Honestly, they’re working hard overseas every day, so I better be working hard where I’m at, doing whatever I can do to get better.”
Kelsey Mills put together a inspiring video documenting Travis's progress. The video is at the top of this post with a warning - you might need a Kleenex (or two) to make it through to the end.