ORANGE PARK, Fla. - An Orange Park soldier who was wounded serving our country in Afghanistan is now struggling to heal and the challenge of transitioned to civilian life as a wounded warrior.
On patrol June 15th, Sgt. Sean Karpf stepped on an improvised explosive device, which detonated and destroyed his foot and left him with other injuries.
"I pushed myself out of the crater. (The medics) started working on me immediately," Karpf said from Walter Reed Army Hospital outside Washington D.C. "The Medivac tried to land (but) the Taliban started shooting at the bird and us. It took off."
He finally was evacuated from the battlefield and has undergone six surgeries since and is beginning rehabilitation.
The 2003 graduate of Orange Park High School has spent the last four years and eight months as a proud member of the Army. Karph's wife, Brandy, is in Washington with him, leaving his two young children back home with their grandparents.
The kids have many questions for their father.
"They ask me questions like, 'Daddy, do you have a robot leg?' No, not yet, I'm still working on it," Karpf said.
While Karpf will be out of action for about six months and will then transition to civilian life, his wife is worried about her job because she's not leaving her husband's side while he's in the fight of his domestic and personal life.
"The brotherhood that comes with being in the Army is special to me. And I love to serve this country. If I could do it again, I'd go right back," Sean Karpf said.
But the family's deepest prayer -- that Karpf survives to see his family again -- as was answered and their anxiety turns to the practical, day-to-day needs in life.
"When you walk around this hospital you see triple amputees; a lot of guys without vision," Brandy Karpf said. "So you're grateful for what happened, because it could have been a lot worse."
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