Silver sprinter

U.S. Army Sergeant Jeremiah Luttmer (left), who grew up in Lindsay, receives his silver medal for the 100-meter dash from a presenting official during the first annual Warrior Games. Soldiers from all branches of the military who were “combat wounded” or wounded while serving, competed in the events. Luttmer received a Purple Heart in 2008 for his actions in Iraq.

Cooke County had some local representation at the first annual Warrior Games in Colorado Springs, Colo. this past month with U.S. Army Sergeant Jeremiah Luttmer, previously of Lindsay, participating in three events.

The Warrior Games are strictly for soldiers from any branch of the military who are “combat wounded” or were wounded while serving. Approximately 200 military people competed during the event which ran May 10-15 , representing all branches of the military.

Luttmer was awarded the silver medal in the 100-meter sprint, fifth place in archery and fifth overall in air rifle after training for the competitions in Georgia, Austin and San Antonio.

“It was great,” he said of his participation. “It was a lot of fun.”

Walking next to him, you would never know that Luttmer was wounded about two years ago during his second deployment to Iraq.

Luttmer said it happened during a mortar attack on the forward operating base where he was posted. He heard a loud boom and fell to the ground. A sergeant dragged him into a room and started to treat his injury.

Two bones were broken as shrapnel entered and exited his ankle. Bone was grafted from his hip to repair the 3 centimeters of bone that had to be removed from his ankle.

He spent about three months in the hospital and was in a wheelchair for seven months. Recovery took more than a year.

During a ceremony at Fort Hood in 2008, Luttmer received a Purple Heart for his actions during the mortar attack.

Luttmer, who is now 25, was born in Lindsay and educated Pre-K through 12th grade in the Lindsay Independent School District. While Fort Hood has been his home since February 2004, he comes back to Cooke County to visit.

“It’s great to come back to visit everyone,” he said. “I still have friends here.”

His parents, Wayne and Cathy, now live south of Muenster and are ardent participants in their son’s success. Both of them attended the Warrior Games to see him compete.

“They do support me a lot,” he noted. “My injury was hard on them.”

“My daughter, Jillian, is going to be 2 in July,” he added. “She is great.”

As far as hobbies, Luttmer’s big love is classic cars. He has restored his 1966 Mustang and his 1966 Ford Galaxy. A friend of his got him started with the cars and he used to attend a lot of car shows and cruises.

Luttmer is now participating in the Ride to Recovery which started over the Memorial Day weekend. The cycling event, known as the Memorial Ride, is a five-day event covering 370 miles . The ride starts in Washington D.C. at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and ends at Virginia Beach, Va.. The event is not a competition, but more of a personal journey. The toughest day covers 72 miles.

“It’s part of the recovery process,” Luttmer said of the events he participates in. “Sports or competition type events will really help you mentally and physically. It’s personal, and participating is therapeutic. You also meet a lot of people. A lot of different people.”

Next, he will participate in the Endeavor Games in Edmond, Okla. which is sponsored by the U.S. Olympic Committee. Competitors will also include paralympians.

Luttmer said he initially enlisted in the Army in July 2003 because, “it was a great option.” Prior to his injury he served as a medic. Wit

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