Veterans Summit Lobuche

The U.S. military has always excelled at training soldiers for combat, but they've had a tougher time helping them adjust to peace after their service has been completed. After being involved in an accident that left him blind, army veteran Steve Baskis directed his efforts to summiting Mount Lobuche.

While serving in Baghdad, Baskis' armored vehicle received a blast from a homemade explosive. It was a metal tube stuffed with explosive material and capped with a concave copper disk. Shrapnel sliced through the car's passenger side door and into Sergeant Victor Cota. Some of the shrapnel went through Cota and into Baskis. Cota did not survive the incident and perished on site. Baskis awoke a week later in a veteran's hospital without his sight.

Although the pain was great, Baskis was determined to make the most of his life. Since the incident Baskis has learned to navigate in his now dark world. He has ran in the Chicago Marathon, finished a half Ironman triathlon, trained for the Paralympic cycling team and now climbed Mt. Lobuche along with 10 other US veterans.

Of the 11 veterans on the trip, three had lost a leg, one was blind, at least seven had sustained traumatic brain injuries, and several were suffering from varying degrees of post-traumatic stress. They used the mountain as a literal way to overcome the hardships they had experienced in war.

On summit day, the climbers used all of their strength to reach the top of Lobuche. At the summit both climbers and guides hugged, some cried, all felt a great sense of accomplishment. The video below highlights the experiences had by the


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