ELYSIAN, Minnesota (KEYC) – An injured veteran shared his story of hope and resilience.
Jack Zimmerman was recently engaged to his wife, Megan, when he enlisted in the military in 2009.
“It was only a few months later that I found myself deployed in Afghanistan,” he said.
At just 21 years old, Zimmerman’s life was just beginning.
Nine months later, everything exploded before his eyes during a catastrophic encounter with an improvised explosive device.
âI just remember going there, going back in the air. It was like a bad dream, like when you dream and feel like you can’t wake up, and you fall. This is how I felt a lot, and I just felt the heat rise in my back. I felt like 10,000 little fingers were crawling behind my back. All these things, I keep seeing them flashing. All these memories, âhe described.
Zimmerman was seriously injured by the explosion.
âResulting in the loss of both of my legs and ripping my arms quite well,â he said.
He was flown to safety while medics took rescue measures.
He added, âI knew I had to stay awake. I couldn’t stay awake any longer and told my guys to tell everyone I love them.
It was then that her surgeon said something that would change her life forever.
âIf you can stay awake five more minutes, I promise you your life, and I was like a deal,â Zimmerman explained. “I woke up in intensive care about a week later and had to rebuild my life.”
âFive Minutesâ is now the title of Zimmerman’s first book to follow his journey from basic training to recovery.
He said it was more than his story; it’s about inspiring others to go through difficult times.
âThere is so much you can take away: impact a life, overcome adversity, create the best new version of yourself,â he said.
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