When Christopher Haley graduated high school, to him, joining the army was just a stepping stone.
“When I was 17, I decided that I didn’t have a plan and I didn’t want to live with my parents, and I did not want to go to school and drop out, so I just figured that the army was the best thing for me,” Retired Army Medic Christopher Haley said.
Haley enlisted as a medic, and it was there, he was given another name - Doc.
“They call you medic until you earn it, then once you earn it, then they start calling you Doc.”
Stationed in Alaska, Doc Haley was deployed twice. First to Iraq and then Afghanistan, risking his life to save others each and every day. But one day will stand above the rest - September 28, 2011.
“One of the guys in one of the platoons stepped on an IED going into the building and since I was the medic that was closest, they called me.”
Doc ran to the injured soldier to begin treatment.
“When I stood up to grab my 8-bag because I threw it against the wall, a secondary IED went off.”
The IED, or improvised explosive device, went off under Doc’s right foot.
“It blew me off a wall into a ditch from where the blast was and then I started to treat myself, try and treat myself, but I couldn’t due to other injuries that I sustained.”
Remaining calm and awake the entire time, doc had to walk another soldier through his treatment. He was then hospitalized for two months.
“I lost my right leg below the knee, an open fracture of my ulna through the skin, I had de-gloving of my right hand, I had soft tissue injuries of my left leg, to my thigh and my shin, and I had shrapnel in my eighth rib.”
But his injuries saved the other soldier’s life.
“I took the brunt of the blast, had I not been standing where I was, it would’ve killed him.”
For his sacrifice, Haley received a Purple Heart, a Bronze Star with Valor, a Combat Medic Badge and an Afghanistan and Iraq Campaign Medal.
But if you ask Haley, he’s just another guy.
“I feel what I was doing was just my job. That’s the way I look at it, that’s just what I was doing, my job.”
“Do you have any regrets?”
“None. None whatsoever.”
Haley retired from the army only three weeks ago. He is now attending college in San Antonio to become a physical therapist. He said the soldier he saved just had his first child, so Doc Haley has saved more than just one life.