Marine Corps Sgt. Tyler Andrews lost his right arm and his left leg in the August 26 ISIS suicide bomb blast that killed 13 U.S. service members and injured dozens more during the evacuation from Kabul, Afghanistan. Andrews has been hospitalized since the attack nearly two months ago and spoke out for the first time this week.
In a statement shared with the Facebook page Warfighter Overwatch, Andrews said, “Let me start by saying that these past almost 2 months have indeed been hard. I have been trying to figure out what I want to say and how to say it. The outpouring of support from friends, family, organizations, and even just complete strangers has been unreal. I won’t ever be able to thank everyone enough, but still, thank you.”
“Ensuring that my mom and siblings are taken care of while they support me is really what matters to me most, and that is being done,” Andrews continued.
Andrews then went on to describe his injuries and the difficult process he has faced in coming to terms with his loss of limb and the recovery process ahead.
“Posting this picture of myself is a very difficult thing for me to do,” Andrews said of the photo of himself in the hospital bed. “I hate the way I look right now and I’m working mentally on coming to terms with loss of my right arm and my left leg. I am sharing this though to help me with this process.”
“Laying in bed for almost 2 months has caused me to lose everything I had worked for physically. Everyday I am working toward my recovery. Some days are better than others, but you best believe I will still strive to be the best version of myself regardless of these injuries. I just have new challenges now and physically am a different person, but I’ll see how far I can go with this new body haha.”
“Thank you again to everyone, you have my love and my family’s,” Andrews said, concluding his statement.
In an October 14 Facebook post, Warfighter Overwatch shared a photo of Andrews in the gym before his injuries.
Andrews was moved out of the intensive care unit at Walter Reed but is still in critical but stable condition, Warfighter Overwatch explained. In addition to his double amputation, Andrews had to undergo 25 surgeries, including a full hip disarticulation.
Warfighter Overwatch has set up a fundraising page on Andrews’ behalf.
A GoFundMe page has also been set up for Andrews with the goal to cover any medical expenses not covered by the U.S. military and “any lodging or logistical requirements for Tyler and his family for the duration of his healing process, for the best rehabilitation and prosthetics we can get him, and for the over all care of him and his families in any monitory fashion.” As of Wednesday, the GoFundMe page has raised more than $350,000 for Andrews.