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Disabled Army veteran Tommy Carroll is attempting to climb Mt. Cotopaxi, a 19,347-foot mountain in Ecuador, as part of his yearlong journey with Soldiers to Summits, a nonprofit program that helps veterans innovate through adversity, take on leadership roles and serve others.
Carroll, 46, is an Army veteran and above-knee amputee whose summit attempt is sponsored by KFC Corporation and the Association of Kentucky Fried Chicken Franchisees (AKFCF).
Carroll, who has lived in Boulder, Colo., for the past eight years, grew up in Pennsylvania. He is a biomedical engineer who designs artificial limbs, including his own prosthetic leg. He is also a rock climber, ski instructor and road biker, as well as a mountaineer.
"Things end up happening and doors keep on opening and you make the choice to go through them or not," Carroll said. "With every step, I learn something new about me. I challenge myself to reach for the unattainable, so that I can pass on my experiences, hopes and dreams to others with disabilities."
Carroll is part of a team of 12 injured veterans and active-duty service personnel who will attempt to summit Mt. Cotopaxi. The team is currently on the mountain and their summit attempt is scheduled for Monday, Dec. 10.
"The AKFCF and KFC family are so proud to support Tommy on this expedition," said Larue Kohl, president of the AKFCF. "Tommy doesn't have to climb a mountain to inspire us, because the way he lives his life is inspirational enough. We're thrilled to be a small part of this amazing journey."
Fans can leave messages of support for Carroll and the other climbers on KFC's Facebook page, and read more about the mission on kfc.com/soldierstosummits.
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