Wounded Warriors amputee softball team dazzles on the diamond
WAUKESHA -- From afar, it looked like any other softball game. But looks can be deceiving.
\"We're here to supply America with a comeback story,\" veteran and athlete Josh Wege said.
Members of the Wounded Warrior softball team displayed the price of war Saturday in Waukesha: missing legs, feet and arms.
\"Amputations, sometimes multiple amputations, come out on a field and persevering it's a pretty inspiring thing to see,\" Wege said.
The Campbellsport native lost both of his legs below the knee in an IED attack in Afghanistan. Now, Wege travels the country with the team raising money and awareness for wounded vets.
\"Love coming to Wisconsin and seeing the support that we get, especially for the team, because all these guys are from different parts, different states,\" Wege said.
\"I can't believe how these guys play ball,\" spectator John Russell said. \"I mean, they can do that and I look and see how what I think is a bad day and these guys are just running around like there's nothing wrong.\"
The Wounded Warriors started as a recreation camp several years back, but as more veterans found it therapeutic, the team grew. It drew in people like Hales Corners native Bobby McCardle.
\"It was pretty difficult at first, but each day gets better and now I'm getting to play softball, so, never thought I'd be doing this,\" McCardle said.
The Warriors have gotten pretty good, plating 19 runs in a win against the Waukesha City \"Allstars\". But for the athletes, the games themselves only mean so much.
\"Jeez, I'd pay to be doing this, so it's quite an experience just being able to get out here and be competitive again,\" McCardle said.
\"Softball is the superficial meaning to this,\" Wege added. \"It's not what this is all about. We're here as a representation of inspiration.\"
Proceeds from the games help pay for the Warriors' transportation and room and board. But they also go toward the team's annual camp for children with amputations.
For more info about the Warriors, visit their website here