In 2010, she was critically injured while working as a combat medic in Iraq. The incident left her in critical condition and hooked up to life support, but Sergeant Elizabeth Marks refused to stay down. After she recovered, she not only pushed to stay on active duty, but she also became a world class swimmer. Now this athlete with disabilities is inspiring others, and the sports world has noticed.
What It Takes To Win An ESPY
Sgt. Marks fought through a rigorous medical review four years ago to be declared fit for active duty. Her bilateral hip injuries had robbed her left leg of sensation, but an IDEO prosthetic helped her push through the hardship. She relied on her military family to inspire her, and that led her to compete in the Invictus Games. Sgt. Marks left the games with four gold medals around her neck, but the winning isn’t why she competes.
The sergeant says she chases experiences and helping others. And that drive has led her to inspiring many veterans who have been injured while serving their country. For this and many other achievements, Sgt. Elizabeth Marks was chosen to receive the Pat Tillman Award for Service at the 2016 ESPY Awards.
What Is The Pat Tillman Award?
The award was named after Pat Tillman, who started the Pat Tillman Foundation to help veterans excel with academic scholarships. The foundation helps those who help others, and Sgt. Marks embodies that spirit. However, this is only the beginning of Sgt. Marks’ journey.
What’s Next For This Athlete With Disabilities?
Her wins at the Invictus Games has also qualified her to represent our country at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. She will be representing not only the members of our fighting forces, but members of the disability community all over the U.S.