Local wounded veteran credits Invictus Games participation for his recovery

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ST. CHARLES, MO (KTVI) – A local wounded warrior continues fighting an invisible enemy while getting inspiration from oversees. He’s an Iraq War veteran we’ve previously featured in Fox Files investigations. Fox 2 News recently caught up with Tim Wymore on his return to St. Louis with a gold medal from the Invictus Games.

Wymore represented the U.S. in the worldwide sports challenge for injured veterans, held in Orlando this past May. Invictus is Latin for “unconquerable.”

Wymore served in the Air Force during the Iraq War. He was surrounded by an unexpected danger: black smoke from burn pits. Fox 2 News first exposed the danger from burning toxic waste on military base landfills in April 2010. Wymore suffers blackouts and brain lesions.

“I’ll never be healed,” Wymore said. “This is just my new normal.”

You’ve seen me with my memory and that it’s terrible.”

Wymore’s wife, Shanna, said his story shows anybody can adapt.

Wymore now holds a gold medal in rugby and a personal letter from former President George W. Bush, which reads, in part, “Your participation inspired a lot of people around the globe, including me.”

Wymore remembered throwing the discus and looking over at his wife with the Bush’s.

“Like they were friends, like he was their next door neighbor or family member,” he said.

Wymore also described his wife’s meeting with Prince Harry.

“She actually when right up and kissed him on the cheek and hugged him, and went right by his security detail but, uh, he didn’t care because she had met him before and they were just goofing and that,” he said.

Wymore’s come a long way from when he was restricted to a wheelchair. During our years of Fox Files coverage, he’s weaned himself off pain meds with the help of the Mayo Clinic and his wife.

“I would’ve given up a long time ago if it wasn’t for (Shanna),” he said.

Shanna said it’s that community and inspiration that Prince Harry pushed at the Invictus Games, while also reminding people of hidden wounds that we should not be afraid to talk about.

“Prince Harry’s trying to change that and it meant so much to listen to that,” Shanna said.

Wymore wants to encourage other veterans to get out of their comfort zones and “try out for these things.”

“Get on their teams for the Warrior Games,” he said. “I’m telling you, it will change your life.”

Meanwhile, the Wymores also wished to credit the Office of Warrior Care Policy and encourage other veterans to call for help.

Follow Fox 2’s Chris Hayes on Twitter @ChrisHayesTV