Rodeo honors servicemen

Posted 6/16/09

In an instant, a young man’s life was changed forever when the vehicle he was driving was hit by a road side bomb. The floorboard imploded crushing …

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Rodeo honors servicemen


In an instant, a young man’s life was changed forever when the vehicle he was driving was hit by a road side bomb.

The floorboard imploded crushing both of his ankles. But 23-year-old Alex Eudy, never stopped until his mission was complete.

Eudy, from Highlands Ranch, is a staff sergeant for the United States Air Force. Although he has been on convalescent leave since January due to his injuries he is still on active duty for the Air Force. He works in special operations weather for the Air Force. He was recently honored at the Elizabeth Stampede on June 7 during the Red, White and Blue Rodeo for his heroic duties overseas.

The day of the attack in Afghanistan was just another mission that had to be completed. Eudy said his excellent Air Force training allowed him to manage the situation.

“It wasn’t very traumatic at the time because it happened rapidly,” he said. “The best part was because of my training, I was still able to provide the needed weather information even after we were hit.”

Eudy said the attack did not have an impact on him until two days later when he visited others who were also injured by the attach in the Intensive Care Unit. Then it became something he had to emotionally process.

“It was actually easier to process because I was able to deal with the reality of the situation early and get my emotions out there,” he said. “I did have feelings of guilt because I was the driver of the vehicle, but I was reminded that there was no way to prevent the attack and those things happen all the time.”

The hardest part of the aftermath was actually the recovery process for Eudy. For months, he was forced to be in a wheel chair and had to quickly learn humility. No longer was he able to perform the simplest and most personal tasks. He had to rely entirely on the help from his family.

“I have a very close and strong family and they provided me with all the support I needed,” he said. “I was like a child again and they were there for me every step of the way.”

But now the sky is the limit for Eudy. He has already made great progress in his recovery. He is no longer in a wheel chair and just two days before the Stampede he was walking with crutches.

“I was able to drive to the rodeo, and I was able to stand and salute the flag,” he said. “Those are mile stones for me.”

Eudy has been in the Air Force for almost five years and plans to make a career in the military. When his convalescent leave is up he will travel back to Florida where he was previously stationed and will work to obtain his officer commissioner as well as earn his degree in geo-sciences.

“The Air Force is a challenge both mentally and physically and I’m able to see a direct impact on people and cultures through the work I do and I get to protect America,” he said.

Eudy’s goal is to walk on his own by Thanksgiving. After his injury he said he had even more respect for other veterans, especially those who were also injured in combat.

“Every time I shake another veteran’s hand there is a very reciprocal respect for each other,” he said. “They served so I could serve now and I serve to protect them.”

Two other men were also honored at the Red, White and Blue Rodeo: Chuck Nichols who served in the Vietnam War with the United States navy and Nathan Ballas who served in Iraq for the United States Army.



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