Amputee Actors Help Train Soldiers for Treating Battlefield Injuries

Acting isn’t just a career option for those who want to appear on stage or screen, it has been a huge benefit for the medical community.  In fact, people who have lost their limbs play an important role in training soldiers and others on the battlefield how to treat severe injuries.

June and Ted DiStefano, who both lost their left legs when their motorcycle was hit by a car fifteen years ago, now work as actors for Strategic Operations (STOPS), which conducts a “hostile environment training course.”  Kit Lavell, a Vietnam war veteran who runs STOPS, points out that individuals in the course become shocked when they see the DiStefanos.  He explains, “The individuals who are going through the training here are not expecting to see an amputee.  And so the shock effect of seeing that happen is priceless.”  The hope is that the initial shock of seeing people who are missing limbs will help those in the course become experienced with that surprise.

Makeup artists make the amputees appear as if they suffered a major battlefield injury, and trainees are asked to treat them under battlefield conditions.  STOPS, which is based in San Diego, has trained American soldiers and other battlefield personal, including reporters.

Heather Morales, who lost her right leg to cancer at eight years old and spent several years as an actor in Hollywood, also works for STOPS.  Morales refers to her injury as “a gift,” pointing out, “Everyone else there out there in the world that thinks that this is something to be ashamed of, don’t.  If there’s something wrong with you, don’t fix it. Embrace it.”

June DiStefano points out that the gratification she receives makes her realize how important of a role she has.  She explains, “When you go home at night, and lay your head on the pillow and know that you have the ability to change someone’s life it’s priceless.”

via CNN

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Latest Videos

http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/director-david-gordon-greene-nar.jpg
Director David Gordon Green Narrates a Scene From ‘Joe’
Director David Gordon Green narrates a sequence from his new film, Joe, featuring Nicolas Cage and Tye Sheridan. In the video, he mentions his reasons why he likes to hire non-traditional actors. He likes people who have real skill-sets and not actors who have the skills on their resume. He also talked about this in […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/david-gordon-green-joe.jpg
Director David Gordon Green: “I find actors in unusual places”
I keep missing screenings of director David Gordon Greene‘s new film, Joe. I hear it’s really good so I’m looking forward to catching it at some point. Joe stars Nicholas Cage as ex-con Joe Ransom, who isn’t the greatest of role models until he meets a 15-year-old boy (Mud‘s Tye Sheridan). In this featurette, Green […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/judy-greer-i-dont-know-why-you-know-me-from.jpg
Please Don’t Say These Things To Judy Greer (video)
Judy Greer - who we love here at Daily Actor – has a new book called, I Don’t Know What You Know Me From (Confessions of a Co-Star), a series of essays about her life as an actress, friend and someone who everyone thinks they might know. Here’s a blurb about the book: “Want to […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/Captain-America-SamuelNick-Fury.jpg
How Samuel L. Jackson Learns His Lines for the Marvel Movies (video)
Samuel L. Jackson stopped by Good Morning America earlier this week to talk about Captain America: The Winter Soldier – which is terrific, by the way – and he told Robin Roberts that for the first Cap film, he had trouble learning his lines. “I sat at home and I did all my studying, and […]
http://www.dailyactor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/andy-karl-margot-seibert-rocky.jpg
Andy Karl and Margo Seibert Talk ‘Rocky: The Musical’ on ‘Today’
Andy Karl and Margo Seibert, the stars of Rocky: The Musical, talked to Today‘s Matt Lauer about the new Broadway musical. Karl talks about the final fight and taking on the iconic role. This is Seibert’s Broadway debut and she’s asked about her callbacks (9 in all!) and more. Check it out!