LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY)- Lafayette resident Christopher Sullivan is an Army veteran with a new mission in life, to help his fellow veterans.
“On May 21 of 2005, we were on a EOD call which is an ordinance disposal call, we were escorting EOD out and I got hit by a sniper in the neck. I busted my left carotid jugular and severed my spine at C7,” explains Sullivan.
While he was lying on the ground in Iraq he says his life truly flashed before his eyes as his battle buddies fought to save his life.
“As I felt myself dying, I made a promise. I said ‘God, if you save my life today, I promise I will devote my life to the two forces that came together to save mine, and that was you, God and my fellow veterans.’ And I’m here today,” says Sullivan.
Recovery wasn’t easy, but he was determined to be out of the hospital by the time his fellow army men returned home. A feat Christopher accomplished.
He says after the dust settled life wasn’t easy either. He turned to drinking to cope with post-traumatic stress.
“After waking up from a really bad hangover I was laying in bed alone staring at the ceiling asking God why he saved my life. And like that it came back, I didn’t fulfill my promise,” Sullivan says.
Life started to change. Sullivan married the love of his life, their family grew, and he worked as a veterans affairs coordinator for the third congressional district. He left the position before the COVID-19 pandemic hit but he’s been busy since then.
“I have passed my fundamentals of instruction, my advanced ground school instruction, and my sport pilot certified flight instructor license through the FAA,” he says. “I’ve taken all of my written exams and I’m working through this COVID to do my check rides.”
Sullivan says the skies are the limit. He wants to help disabled veterans fly, find purpose in life, and work through PTSD.
“Just because the war is over does not mean that their battle at home has not stopped,” he says. “This is what I have to do. God has given me so many blessings in my lifetime, it’s the least I can do. My battle buddy saved my life when I was bleeding out in Iraq. How can you repay that? I know how I can repay that. I can wake up every morning and I can help as many veterans as I can.”