Retired Sgt. Joshua Hamilton, US Army
Josh knew from a very young age he wanted to serve his country and follow in the footsteps of his grandfather, father, and uncle, he just never guessed there were going to be so many obstacles in the way to reach that goal. Diagnosed with stage 3 melanoma as a child, the military disqualified him from applying until he was cancer-free for 10 years.
After graduating high school, he went to the recruiter’s office every two years to discuss options, with the same result, not until you are 10 years cancer-free. Josh made the best of that time and went to college, receiving degrees in telecommunications management and computer science.
At age 30 Josh finally got the answer from the recruiter he was waiting to hear, and he used his communications training as a network node operator to maintain communications between outposts while deployed. At times he was a mobile communications unit, AT&T on wheels as he called it. One day while doing routine maintenance on equipment an insurgent driving a school bus loaded with car bombs detonated at the gate of his post. Standing about 50 yards from the blast, he suffered multiple injuries, ending the career he fought so hard to attain.
Since that vehicle explosion in 2007, Josh continued to fight through many surgeries and physical therapy to regain as much motion as possible. With fusions in his neck, lower back and the pelvic region he sought help through the Adaptive Training Foundation, and he continues to live a very adapted life with a positive attitude. That’s also where he met Kelly Talamantes, who convinced him to apply and experience the freedom of movement underwater. He has snorkeled in Mexico and he can’t wait to take it to the next level.
With his drive to serve Josh volunteers with Team Rubicon and Building Homes for Heroes. He’s also helping his mother in her fight against cancer. He’s patiently awaiting his turn to become a dive pirate. Please help him continue his journey of celebrating life after injury, with Instructor Joe Pazos of International Scuba, Carrollton, TX.