Dan Dunn

 

Dan joined the Household Cavalry in 2006 aged 22, following in the footsteps of his father who was also in the Household Cavalry. After training in Windsor, Dan spent 18 months based at Knightsbridge as a mounted trooper mainly performing ceremonial duties. In February 2009, Dan moved from ceremonial to armoured responsibilities. After further training, Dan was posted to Afghanistan in October 2009.


After a couple of weeks’ acclimatisation in Camp Bastion, Dan moved to Camp Price just outside Gereshk in Hellmand. On 13th February, 2010 Dan was on patrol in a Scimitar armoured reconnaissance vehicle with his commander and gunner. Despite being the second vehicle in the packet, Dan drove over an IED. It exploded directly under the footwell, instantly blowing off his right leg below the knee and causing major tissue and bone damage to his left leg. In addition, Dan suffered two gunshot wounds. The first bullet went through his left leg, shattering his tibia and fibula, with the second bullet going through his ankle. His commander and gunner were thrown from the vehicle, although neither suffered long-term damage.


Dan was taken back to Camp, airlifted the following day back to Birmingham Selly Oak and operated on some 36 hours after the explosion. The doctors put a metal rod through his left leg, and pinned the bone to it. They rebuilt his left heel, again using metal to hold it together.


“It was incredible how quickly I was taken from Afghanistan back to Selly Oak. This, coupled with the skill of the doctors there, meant that they were able to save my left leg. Also, at Selly Oak, they are so good at getting you up and mobile as soon as possible – into physio, into wheelchairs and working on your upper-body strength.”


From Selly Oak, Dan went to Headley Court for 3 and half months. This was a tough period, as the damage to Dan’s left leg and heel, coupled with his right leg stump, was so severe that it took a long time for him to be able to try a prosthetic leg. Unfortunately in July 2010, while at Hedley Court, Dan picked-up two major infections in his right stump, and had to spend 10 days in intensive care in Frimley Park on intravenous antibiotics.


“I was so focused on getting a prosthetic for my right leg so I could become more mobile, that I probably pushed it too hard. The infection I picked-up was terrible. The pain was unbearable. I couldn’t cope. Fortunately the hospital was able to give me sufficient antibiotics to beat the infection.”

Dan Dunn

 

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