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Marine Veteran Becomes Police Officer After Losing His Leg To An IED In Iraq
In 2007, an improvised explosive device explosion in Aloos, Iraq, left Marine Sgt. Christopher Lawrence with life-threatening injuries, a severely injured left arm and a badly mangled right leg. In 2008 Lawrence made the decision to have his injured leg amputated and was told that he might never walk again without assistance.
Now, he is about to achieve his lifelong dream of becoming a cop.
On June 23, 10 years after the blast, and nine years after he lost his leg, Lawrence will be sworn in as a police officer with the Chula Vista Police Department in southern California, according to a press release from the department.
The Challenged Athletes Foundation Operation Rebound celebrates Chris Lawrence, who graduates 6/17 from the police academy as a CVPD Officer pic.twitter.com/q63PrqiGAq
— Chula Vista Police (@ChulaVistaPD) June 14, 2017
"I always looked up to them and thought about becoming an officer after I got out of the Marine Corps, that's something I would do," Lawrence said in a June 21 interview with a local Fox News affiliate. "I wouldn't have ever guessed nine, 10 years ago when I got injured that I would be achieving this."
Lawrence’s road to recovery was hard, including dozens of surgeries and a skin graft the length of his left arm, and he’s had to slowly learn to walk again. But after medically retiring from the Marine Corps in 2010 following five years of service, Lawrence began building his body back up through a strict workout routine, which included cycling, running, and boxing. It was after he knocked out an opponent in the ring that he realized he wouldn’t be hindered by his injuries.
Though Lawrence had a few false starts with joining the force — his application was rejected from a few different agencies due to concerns over physical limitations — he stuck with it, according to an NBC News affiliate in San Diego. He enrolled at the Southwestern Police Academy in Chula Vista, to show prospective agencies he was up to the task. Lawrence flew through the course, impressing his peers and potential superiors.
“I have never met a more abled-body person in my life,” Chula Vista Police Chief Roxana Kennedy said in the June 15 statement. “The power of his attitude and character, and the strength in his heart easily overcome the physical challenges. His life and the challenges he has overcome are an inspiration to others.”
In May, another Marine veteran, Matias Ferreira made history when he became the first double amputee in the U.S. to become a police officer.
Following the swearing in ceremony Lawrence will begin field training immediately.
Senior defense officials offered a wide range of excuses to reporters on Wednesday about why they may not comply with a subpoena from House Democrats for documents related to the ongoing impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
On Oct. 7, lawmakers subpoenaed information about military aid to Ukraine. Eight days later, a Pentagon official told them to pound sand in part because many of the documents requested are communications with the White House that are protected by executive privilege.
Senators Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) will announce legislation Wednesday aiming to "fix" a new Trump administration citizenship policy that affects some children of U.S. service members stationed abroad.
The inside story of how The Village People shot the Navy's most controversial recruiting video onboard an active warship
The video opens innocently enough. A bell sounds as we gaze onto a U.S. Navy frigate, safely docked at port at Naval Base San Diego. A cadre of sailors, dressed in "crackerjack" style enlisted dress uniforms and hauling duffel bags over their shoulders, stride up a gangplank aboard the vessel. The officer on deck greets them with a blast of a boatswain's call. It could be the opening scene of a recruitment video for the greatest naval force on the planet.
Then the rhythmic clapping begins.
This is no recruitment video. It's 'In The Navy,' the legendary 1979 hit from disco queens The Village People, shot aboard the very real Knox-class USS Reasoner (FF-1063) frigate. And one of those five Navy sailors who strode up that gangplank during filming was Ronald Beck, at the time a legal yeoman and witness to one of the strangest collisions between the U.S. military and pop culture of the 20th century.
"They picked the ship and they picked us, I don't know why," Beck, who left the Navy in 1982, told Task & Purpose in a phone interview from his Texas home in October. "I was just lucky to be one of 'em picked."
Defense Secretary Mark Esper on Tuesday casually brushed aside the disturbing news that, holy shit, MORE THAN 100 ISIS FIGHTERS HAVE ESCAPED FROM JAIL.
In an interview with CNN's Christiane Amanpour, Esper essentially turned this fact into a positive, no doubt impressing public relations and political talking heads everywhere with some truly masterful spin.
"Of the 11,000 or so detainees that were imprisoned in northeast Syria, we've only had reports that a little more than a hundred have escaped," Esper said, adding that the Syrian Democratic Forces were continuing to guard prisons, and the Pentagon had not "seen this big prison break that we all expected."
Well, I feel better. How about you?
On Wednesday, the top U.S. envoy in charge of the global coalition to defeat ISIS said much the same, while adding another cherry on top: The United States has no idea where those 100+ fighters went.
A senior administration official told reporters on Wednesday the White House's understanding is that the SDF continues to keep the "vast majority" of ISIS fighters under "lock and key."
"It's obviously a fluid situation on the ground that we're monitoring closely," the official said, adding that released fighters will be "hunted down and recaptured." The official said it was Turkey's responsibility to do so.
President Trump expressed optimism on Wednesday about what was happening on the ground in northeast Syria, when he announced that a ceasefire between Turkey and the Kurds was expected to be made permanent.
"Turkey, Syria, and all forms of the Kurds have been fighting for centuries," Trump said. "We have done them a great service and we've done a great job for all of them — and now we're getting out."
The president boasted that the U.S.-brokered ceasefire had saved the lives of tens of thousands of Kurds "without spilling one drop of American blood."
Kade Kurita, the 20-year-old West Point cadet who had been missing since Friday evening, was found dead on Tuesday night, the U.S. Military Academy announced early Wednesday morning.
"We are grieving this loss and our thoughts and prayers go out to Cadet Kurita's family and friends," Lt. Gen. Darryl Williams, superintendent of West Point, said in the release.