Invictus Games

Veteran who lost both legs fighting Colombian drug gang hails benefits of Invictus Games

Watch: Former soldier, Francisco Jenaro during a military operation to rescue hostages lost his limbs after a mine was detonated.

A former soldier who lost both his legs to a mine has revealed how competing in the Invictus Games has helped him cope with his injury.

Francisco Jenaro was a Sergeant First Class in the National Army of Colombia, in which he served for 24 years.

During a military operation to rescue hostages being held captive by a drug gang, a mine was detonated, resulting in Francisco losing his limbs.

Speaking to Forces News, he said: "It was hard because you have to accept your situation, you have to adapt your life.

"They gave me the wheelchair and they said 'that is yours' … I understand that I have to live the rest of my life using a wheelchair."

Francisco Jenaro Colombia Invictus Team Uniform Dusseldorf 2023 120923 CREDIT BFBS
Francisco Jenaro served in the National Army of Colombia for 24 years.

Francisco, who has been taking part in the rowing, said he had found competing in the Games in Düsseldorf to be an incredibly positive experience.

"Sometimes you don’t need to speak the same language when you are practising a sport," he explained.

"Sport is the best language that you can use to say 'I am happy, I am proud and I am glad to be in a competition with other countries'."

This year is the first time Colombia, Israel and Nigeria have taken part in the Invictus Games.

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