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It takes a lot for a former 82nd Airborne Division Paratrooper such as myself to yell "Currahee" with pride, but this did it.
Lt. Brian Brennan, a 101st Airborne Soldier from New Jersey, lay in Walter Reed Army Hospital after encountering an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan which claimed the lives of three of his fellow Soldiers. The prognosis from the doctors was grim: his legs had been amputated and was in a coma from which he was not expected to recover.
Lt. Brennan and his family were visited by General David Petraeus, a man who was no stranger to near-death experiences, having recovered from being accidentally shot in the chest during a training exercise at Fort Bragg. General Petraeus, the former commander of the legendary 101st Airborne Division, offered words of encouragement to the young comatose Soldier, but to no avail.
The General then tried a new strategy: he gathered the family together, and they all simultaneously shouted "Currahee"--a Cherokee word which is the motto of the 101st Airborne Division (as portrayed in the TV series Band of Brothers).
Upon hearing the word "Currahee", Lt. Brennan began to move. Day by day, his condition began to improve to the point where he is now able to walk, and even run, on a pair of prosthetic legs.
Thanks to Fark.com and The New Editor for the head's up.