29 July 2017
David Opati Etale, 31, lost the ability to use his leg eight years ago, to a roadside bomb while in a combat vehicle in Afghanistan while he served in the British Army.
Before joining the British army, football was always his passion and he played as a striker in the Kenya Premier League for Tusker Football Club and others.
According to him, “at some point, I wanted to take my own life. I attempted suicide twice because of the challenges I was facing physically, socially and psychologically.”
Narrating how a bomb went off on his right leg, he said, “on October 18th, 2009, I woke up in particularly low spirits.
“We went on patrol and we were attacked by Taliban militants in a fight that saw us engage them in a fire exchange for two hours.
“When everything went silent, we decided to drive back to our base but somewhere along the way, our vehicle hit an Improvised Explosive Device (IED).”
David says when all hopes was lost, his daughter restored his hope in life when she walked into his room and told him that he was her hero and that she loved him beyond measure.
“Her words made me realise that I had a purpose in life. I just could not give up. I had to rise up and walk. I had to live again,” David said.
“I was eventually medically discharged from the armed forces and now all I do is motivational speaking around schools and colleges.
“My engagement has taught me that no matter what situation you find yourself in life, if you embrace it with a positive attitude, there is nothing that is impossible to achieve,” he said.