South Georgia wounded warrior makes progress - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

South Georgia wounded warrior makes progress

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By Len Kiese - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Thousands of Georgia National Guard troops are on the ground now in Afghanistan. It's a reminder for one retired guardsman of the last time the 48th Brigade deployed. But the wounded warrior has other reminders as he continues to deal with serious wounds suffered in Iraq.

Losing a leg takes lots of adjustment but that progress was interrupted recently with a simple trip to the doctor's office.

A day in 2005 is one Sergeant First Class Clarence Eady will never forget. "At that time, life changed for me," said Eady.

While on a mission in Baghdad, an Improvised Explosion Device hit the driver's side of Eady's military vehicle. "I wanted to think that it was all a dream and that I was going to wake up one day and everything would be back to normal but I never woke up out of that dream," said Eady.

The reality was that one of Eady's legs had to be amputated. The other leg was in bad shape with burns and crushed bones. "It all became reality," said Eady.

There was plenty of hospital time followed by life in a wheelchair.  Now Eady is able to walk around with the help of a prosthetic and plenty of medicine. "Without the pain medication it causes a problem," said wife Kay Eady.

"It's excruciating pain and you just learn to live with it," said Clarence.

To help with phantom pain in the amputated leg and severe arthritis in the other, one important medication is methadone.  Eady's doctor of the past two months said 'no' to writing a prescription for the drug he's used for years. "I thought about how I've sacrificed so much to have free medical, the ability to go to any doctor and this is the way that you treat me," said Eady.

"To have somebody come back and tell you what they can't do after you've done all you can do. For something as simple as a prescription, that's just a bit much for me," said Kay.

Kay Eady says that's no way to treat a veteran, especially since he needs all he can get to keep moving. "It puts me to the level where I can function without being so sleepy all the time," said Eady.

It's just a reminder that moving forward continues to need adjustments. "It's getting easier and easier everyday," said Eady. Every now and then, there's a bump in the path to progress.

Before, all of Eady's treatment was taken care of by the military. Now that he's medically retired and using the civilian medical system, he says he's dealing with new battles. We're happy to report that after several calls he was able to see a new doctor and get that prescription.

Eady earned a Purple Heart because of those injuries he suffered in Iraq.

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