November 12, 2011 will forever be known as Corporal Joshua Sust’s Alive Day, or the day he cheated death.
On mounted patrol in Helmand Provence, Afghanistan, his unit encountered an Improvised Explosive Device (IED). Josh’s last memory that day was watching his helmet fly off his head, and he suffered major injuries to his left leg and arm.
After three years of constant pain in his leg, Josh elected to amputate. He was inspired by the examples led by his fellow Marines who are now enjoying active lives with below knee amputations.
Josh’s relationship with Abilities In Motion began when he was fitted for an IPOP (Removable Immediate Post Operative Cast) by Tom Walsh. This device was key to his recovery because it allowed him to keep his leg straight and protect the incision site.
On December 23, 2015, Josh received his new prosthesis. He told the staff at Abilities In Motion, “It was the best Christmas present ever. Just being able to take that first step was an amazing feeling and accomplishment”. Learning to use the prosthesis was the beginning of Josh’s new life.
Josh’s enthusiasm and zest for life is contagious. Because he wants to continue to pay it forward, it was a natural move to make Josh a valuable member of the Abilities In Motion team.
“Josh is able to speak to patients with an empathy and understanding that only someone with his experience can express,” says Tom Walsh. “He is able to coach and inspire patients to keep moving forward”.
Nowadays, Josh spends his free time working on his yard, and taking care of his puppy, Loki, who definitely puts him and his prosthesis to work! Josh is here for any questions or advice regarding life as an amputee.