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About Simon Brown - Help for Heroes
Born in November 1978 Brown grew up in Morley, west Yorkshire. After leaving secondary education with only a few GCSE’s to show for his time in school he went on to a succession of dead and jobs. Realising that his life was going nowhere Brown made the bold decision to join the British army in 1997.
After successfully completing basic and trade training as a VM (vehicle mechanic) he was posted to Germany in 1998. In 1999 he deployed on the first of his three operational tours. After six months in Kosovo on a mentally gruelling tour he returned to Germany.
Following several exercises in Europe, Canada and Oman, Brown moved to another posting where in 2003 he deployed to Iraq for the allied invasion. On his return from this tour he moved back to the UK to continue his career.
In 2006 brown returned to Iraq for his third op tour. On the morning of 06/12/2006 the crew Brown commanded was called in to rescue a stranded vehicle with a crew of six on board. Brown successfully led the mission but on the extraction was shot in the face by a sniper. Giving his own first aid for the first 25 minutes at Basra palace he was put in to a drug endued coma. He was return to the UK where he spent 17 days in the coma.
He woke in Birmingham to the news his left eye was destroyed and there was little hope for sight in the right. After 17 operations accumulating over 100 hours of surgery over the last 9 years, he has now managed to cope with the changes and move on. He started this process by volunteering with disadvantaged young people using his own experience to help motivate and inspire them. He says that opportunity to feel useful again gave him the confidence to push his own boundaries to move forward. Some of his achievements include speaking at the GQ man of the year awards, speaking to the England rugby team before the 2012 six nations and carrying the Olympic torch. He has even had a statue made that was displayed in Trafalgar square alongside 19 other inspiring veterans. Brown now works full time with Blind Veterans UK which he sees as a start to a new phase of his life and embraces his new challenges with positivity
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