One year ago this month Lance Corporal (LCpl) and Machine Gunner Matias Ferreira was injured by an improvised explosive device (IED) blast in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan.
He sustained bilateral below the knee amputations and a pelvic fracture from the IED. Within four days of his injury, he arrived at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda for a brief stay before being transferred to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC, to begin his rehabilitation.
The Semper Fi Fund first began assisting the Ferreira family when his family arrived at his bedside at Bethesda. Family support grants enabled his parents to travel between the hospital and home and assisted the caregivers with necessary funds when the loss of income and military support didn't cover all bills and expenses. Matias also received a vehicle grant from the SFF to help with the purchase of his modified 2011 Ford F150. Check out the photo below of Matias in front of his new truck!
Now a year after his injury, Matias no longer needs physical therapy. He enjoys many athletic activities like bike rides and wheelchair basketball. Using his prosthetic legs, Matias has entered bike races, reached the top of a climbing wall and competed in a marathon!
Matias continues his journey with a recent move into an apartment in Rockville, MD, anticipating his transition out of the Marine Corps and into the civilian community. In 2012, he plans to stay in the local area and has started attending nursing school at Catholic University in Washington, DC. He also hopes to begin volunteering for the Rockville Fire Department and has completed his medical boards, anticipating to medically retire from the Marine Corps this month.
The Semper Fi Fund is honored to have been at LCpl Ferreira's side this past year, and we will happily be there to meet any needs that may arise in the future.
Please join us in wishing LCpl Ferreira all the best as he pursues his goals in 2012!