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Local soldier shares story of survival

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Updated: 6/12/2013 11:49 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Retired Army Specialist Bryan Wagner never saw it coming.  “We took a direct hit,” he said.

The Humvee he was in immobilized - and the device that did the damage ripped through him too,
“The result of which was the amputation of my right leg below the knee,” said Wagner.

He points to a safety plate he was wearing that he says lots of troops complain about as the device that saved his life.

‘We weren't very happy when we got them because it’s extra weight.  But you better believe I’m pretty happy now,” he shared.

Wednesday, during a small ceremony at the Wounded Warrior Project, Wagner got to see the protective gear he was wearing on that day nearly six years ago.  It was a December day when things could have turned out very differently.

“It was very surreal and very humbling to remember that I actually took that and put that in that side plate pouch,” Wagner remembers.

So now he wants to help others persevere.

“I just want to make sure that other guys like myself that are laying in a hospital bed realize disability is only a state of mind,” he remarked.

Wagner hopes to earn a doctorate in physical therapy and help other military service men and women.

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