In honor of Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2011, Points of Light will feature stories of veterans, service members and their families recognized as Daily Point of Light honorees this week.
Ramon Guitard, a Purple Heart recipient, served two tours in Iraq and lost both legs when a roadside bomb exploded outside Baghdad in 2004. After spending a month in a coma, Ramon woke to find his right leg had been amputated, a blood clot had caused a stroke that temporarily paralyzed the left side of his body and he had lost vision in his right eye. As serious as his injuries were, Ramon felt moved to help other patients in their recovery and began volunteering as a motivational speaker while he was hospitalized at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.
After his release from Walter Reed AMC, he continued to motivate and inspire others through his speeches at various faith and community organizations. He continued his efforts by becoming a Red Cross Volunteer at Moncrief Army Community Hospital. Ramon furthered his involvement by becoming a board member of Operation Homefront. He continues today with American Red Cross as a motivational and public speaker for special events.
Ramon is actively engaged in voluntary service directed at the needs or improvement of the community. He overcame his own obstacles and is currently helping others to overcome their obstacles. He promotes positive attitudes towards people with disabilities and encourages people with disabilities to lead independent lives.
He creates a chain reaction and teaches people how to assist other veterans. He gives people the tools to increase their self confidence. In spite of his recent diagnosis with chronic myeloid leukemia, Ramon will not be deterred. His contribution to the community is a reminder to people to value and appreciate life every day.