Soldier braces for a new leg

By Mike Hixenbaugh
Rocky Mount Telegram
Aug. 17, 2008


Shooting pains keep him awake some nights.

The steel pins that have been drilled deep into bone to hold Michael Beck’s war-damaged right leg together irritate his skin. Without proper care, the rod entry points become dry, red and full of pus, making the most simple of maneuvers agonizing for the 21-year-old Rocky Mount native.

Since arriving four months ago at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., with two shattered legs and countless other gashes and burns, those 20-or-so pins have been a constant nag; a glaring hitch in the continuing recovery process.

Not all pain is as apparent.

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