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Published: Friday June 8th, 2018

An Invisible Injury: Warrior Games 2018

Meet one of four Colorado-based athletes representing the United States Air Force in this year's 2018 Department of Defense Warrior Games in Colorado Springs. Master Sgt. Michael Christiansen, a protocol office superintendent at Peterson AFB 21st Space Wing, lives with pain on a daily basis because of a fractured and shifted vertebrae of his lower back. A large explosion from a rocket attack during his deployment in Kirkuk, Iraq, threw MSgt. Christiansen into a Humvee. The damage from the impact gradually grew worse over time, until his back completely gave out during a deployment in Balad, Iraq, in 2007. Through the Air Force Wounded Warrior (AFW2) Adaptive and Rehabilitative Sports Program, Christiansen found a new sense of purpose and connected with fellow wounded warriors. His success in the program led to his selection to represent Team Air Force in the Warrior Games, where branches of the United States Armed Forces, as well as teams from Canada, Great Britain, and Australia, compete against one another in a variety of adaptive sporting events. The 2018 Warrior Games began on June 1st and ends on Saturday, June 9th. Christiansen is participating in Archery, Cycling, Field, Shooting, Sitting Volleyball, and Wheelchair Basketball.

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