Mid-Michigan hero speaks about stroke awareness - WNEM TV 5

Mid-Michigan hero speaks about stroke awareness

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SAGINAW, MI (WNEM) -

Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills knows all about overcoming adversity, and Thursday night he shared some of those secrets with local stroke victims.

Mills is full of life and goes out of his way to make people feel comfortable about his disability. Covenant thought it made perfect sense to have him as their keynote speaker to bring attention to stroke awareness.

"Life does get better, I am not a sob story," Mills said.

Mills is one of a handful of surviving quadruple amputee soldiers. The Vassar native was seriously wounded in Afghanistan in 2012 after he set off an explosive device while on duty.

"I know people feel bad about what happened to me and that's fine, but don't feel bad for me. I am not a wounded guy anymore, I am just a guy with scars," Mills said.

 He now shares his story to inspire others across the country. The husband and father found his way back home to Mid-Michigan tonight at Saint Stephens in Saginaw as part of Covenant's effort to bring stroke awareness front and center.

"Stroke is a leading cause of disability in the United States and every four minutes someone dies of a stroke," said Kerri Chernauckas.

A stroke is derived from the brain, but it can leave one with disabilities throughout the entire body, Chernauckas said.

Something Mills knows all too well, making him the perfect choice to shine some light on how to continue living after a life altering event.

"Things that I think that are maybe big problems to myself are really insignificant when you look at it, it gives you a great perspective," he said.

"The big thing is, I am not going to give up cause how selfish would that be, my medic saved me, my guys went up and got turnakits, my doctor, my nurses my therapists, there's love and support from everybody in the nation," Mills said.

Covenant doctors reminded everyone Thursday if someone shows signs of a stroke, losing the ability to speak, move an arm or leg on one side, or experience facial paralysis, to call 911 immediately and get help.

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