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Va. Resident Speaks at Convention

Anita Kumar

ST. PAUL --- Virginia resident and retired Army captain Leslie Smith spoke briefly on the floor of the Republican National Convention last night about her quest to encourage wounded veterans to live life to the fullest.

Smith, of tiny Tappahannock in Essex County, had her left leg amputated after suffering a rare blood disorder during a 2002 peace-keeping mission to Bosnia-Herzegovina.

"We need to make tomorrow better than today,'' she told the crowd of thousands last night.

Smith had 20 surgeries during her seven-month stay at Walter Reed Army Medical Center. Since then, she has completed four marathons, one triathlon and was recruited to try-out for the U.S. Paralympics Women's Sitting Volleyball team for the 2008 U.S. Paralympic Games in Beijing, China.

Now, she visits wounded military service members, motivating them to overcome their physical challenges through athletics.

By Anita Kumar  |  September 3, 2008; 1:40 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , At the 2008 Conventions , Election 2008/President  
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