Marine veteran Alex Minsky went through boot camp at MCRD San Diego and received further training at Camp Pendleton before being deployed to Afghanistan in 2009. Just two weeks into his deployment, his truck rolled over an improvised explosive device, and he was gravely injured.
An Orange County Register article from June 2009 reports Minsky had his right leg amputated and he suffered major brain injuries that left him in a coma for months. At the time, his mother Jackie told the Register:
"It will probably never be the Alex Minsky that I know. It's going to be a wait-and-see type of game."
But Minsky fought back. He learned to walk again, and regained most of his brain function. Emotional trauma from his injuries prompted him to turn to alcohol, and Minsky faced another battle to overcome his dependency on booze. He told the New York Daily News:
"I was just living numb. Just running away from all those problems in life and thinking that a drink would fix everything. Now I know that that's not [the case]."
Everything changed for Minsky when he was discovered by a modelling scout while working out at the gym. Now the Marine veteran makes his living as a fitness and underwear model.
His inspiring story has lead to television interviews with Inside Edition, Good Morning America, and NBC Los Angeles (I've posted that video up top).
Minsky told the New York Daily News he gives a lot of what he earns modelling to the Wounded Warrior Project:
"I'm donating heavily to the Wounded Warrior Project because they helped me. They helped me a lot along the way, and they helped my family."