Home at last, Army specialist Doug Harris speaks out
“I saw my buddy, Vance, sitting down and I tried to go over to help him,” said Army specialist Doug Harris. “That’s when I realized I’d been hit.”
In May, Harris and his battalion had been going on one of their last missions, to clear out a village in the Helmond Province area of Afghanistan. “I remember everything.We were walking in a line and I was the eighth person in the formation, toward the middle of the line, when I stepped on an IED (improvised explosive device).”
Harris, realizing that one of his legs was gone, tried to apply tourniquets to his wounds but his kit was lying underneath him. His right hand wasn’t working and he couldn’t get to the tourniquet. “I waited until our two team leaders came to help. Sgt. Green helped keep me calm and they got me onto a bird. My buddy who had shrapnel in his eye was telling the guys helping him to help me and I was telling the guys helping me to help him.”
After that, Harris doesn’t remember much about the helicopter flight except that a flight medic helped him raise his left arm to fist bump his wounded friend.
Harris spent his 22nd birthday in Bethesda Naval Hospital as he underwent surgeries to amputate his left leg, repair his ...