(WJBK) - Sergeant Nick Koulchar was wounded in 2008 while serving our country in Iraq. The vehicle he was riding in was hit by an IED. His driver was killed in action, and Nick was also not expected to live. But, he fought through 60 major surgeries and made a remarkable recovery.
Now, the Michigan native continues to fight to break down barriers for other wounded veterans. It all started when he was in physical therapy, he met a woman named Janet from Achilles International.
"They try to introduce veterans to something more than just being disabled. They try to say, 'Hey, we have this equipment here; you can get on it and can still get out and do things. How would you like to do a marathon?' he tells FOX 2's Amy Andrews. "I laughed at them just like you're laughing, and I told them no for about a year. But, they would come down and keep asking, so I gave it a try one day and ended up liking it, and did my very first marathon here in Detroit back in 2010, and I was hooked."
He's racing again this weekend in the Detroit Free Press/Talmer Bank Marathon.
He's also taken his training to several handcycling and crossfit events throughout the years, and will also be competing soon in his fifth Bank of America Chicago Marathon.
After volunteering with the agency, he was also offered a full-time position with Disabled American Veterans in 2012. The DAV trained him in veteran's benefits law to advocate for disabled veterans in front of the Department of Veterans Affairs.
To learn more about Achilles International, visit www.achillesinternational.org.