Video: Wounded Army sergeant completes incredible lifts with no legs

During a deployment to Afghanistan, Sergeant Matthew Melancon’s MRAP truck was hit by an Improvised Explosive Device in Afghanistan -shattering his heel bones instantly.

In an attempt to rescue his crew and evacuate, Melancon jumped from the vehicle, falling nearly seven feet into the blast crater and breaking both of his ankles. While there were no fatalities from the attack, both Melancon and his driver were immediately evacuated to Germany for treatment.

Due to the injuries he sustained, Sgt. Melancon was medically retired from active-duty in 2013.

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During his recovery period he developed a life threatening MRSA infection in his left leg, resulting in amputation.  After discovering his salvaged right leg could not endure the rigors of his new passion of competitive snowboarding, he made the life-changing decision to become a double amputee.

#teambiodapt these feet have revolutionized my sport of snowboarding, and it’s freed me in the gym! Not stuck in the Smith Machine! #fakephalanges

A video posted by Matthew Melancon (@madmatt337) on

Melancon admits the weight looks a lot heavier than it is, weighing in at 166 lbs -still an impressive feat for a guy who just strapped on some new legs.  He is currently in San Diego testing out his new high-speed Biodapt “Versa” feet, which he said were essentially made of “aluminum and a mountain bike shock.” Surprisingly, they have a “night and day” difference compared to his expensive carbon fiber predecessors.


He said, “they are optimized for freedom of movement rather than performance.” Discovering these feet have allowed  him to lift with proper form and pursue his athletic goals.

Melancon is an athlete and motivational speaker, believing in the power of attitude and inspiring those around him.  In 2015, Melancon competed in his first International Snowboarding competition and is focused on qualifying for the 2018 Paralympic Games in Pyeong Chang, South Korea.

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You can learn more about Sergeant Melancon and his mission on his website, Fake Phalanges.

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