John had already been to war once, having suffered a traumatic brain injury caused by an IED explosion. The resilient and dedicated soldier underwent two years of intense therapy to recover from his injury, only to reenlist once again as soon as he felt ready.
Just a month into his second stint at war, John’s arms and legs were lost when he had the terrible misfortune of stepping on an improvised explosive. With his limbs gone, John reached the lowest point of his life. That is until, one day while gazing out the window of his hospital room, he witnessed a double amputee holding the hand of his child and wife. “I want to do that,” he thought to himself. That’s the moment John decided he wasn’t giving up.
Soon after, the Marine joined a different kind of fight: one to find love. John signed up for Match and did not hold back in his profile.
“I’m a quad amputee,” he wrote. “I was injured twice in the Marines, not looking for a sugar mama, I’m actually looking for a woman to start a family with.”
His unapologetic honesty caught Jessica’s attention right away and she reached out. Their first date was at his house, and they haven’t looked back since.
Because Emperor penguins are soulmates for life, Jessica nicknamed John her “little penguin” so John figured it was a no-brainer to propose in front of the penguin exhibit at the Boston aquarium. And that’s just what he did.
This past August, John finally received a double-arm transplant, followed by the couple celebrating their 6-month anniversary. John will focus intensely on physical therapy for the duration of this year, so come their December 2018 wedding date, he’s able to hold his bride’s hands as he says “I Do.”