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Wounded Warriors Play Ball In Telford, P.A.

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TELFORD, Pa. -

While many Americans are enjoying an extra day off this weekend, a group of military service members made sure none of us forget the true meaning of Memorial Day.

Saturday they donned a different kind of uniform in Telford, PA.

"I'm usually the fastest guy on the team when we go out to events. They call me the blade runner.,” Dan Lasko said.

Lasko brings a new meaning to legging one out.

The Marine lost his left leg 10 years ago while deployed in Afghanistan.

"I was only there for almost a month until my vehicle struck an IED,” Lasko said.

But like his teammates, this wounded warrior from Bethlehem, PA never lost his desire to compete.

"I was running my first ten miler only four months after getting my first prosthetics and from there I took off,” he said.

To a grand entrance of patriotism that included a veteran parachuting onto the diamond, and a first pitch from Souderton's Jamie Moyer, the Wounded Warrior Amputee Softball Team took the field against local fire departments on this Memorial Day weekend.

"You wouldn't know they had anything wrong with them or any kind of injury or anything else. We do better fighting fires,” Gerry Guretse of Telford Fire Department said.

General Manager and Army Veteran David Van Sleet started the team three and a half years ago.

He's not an amputee, but has worked with prosthetics while at the Department of Veterans Affairs.

"Playing softball, that's almost a front. Basically we're trying to educate the public about people with prosthetics and what they can do and guys that have returned from the military and the war, that they can get back into society and be an outstanding citizen just like everybody else,” he said.

Lasko designed his prosthetic using fabric from the uniform he used to wear.

He said knowing he's inspiring others just by taking the field is humbling.

"I don't even notice I have a prosthetic leg I just go out there and run around. The only way I notice it is in the morning when I put it on and at night when I take it off,” he said.

The Wounded Warriors play 30-40 weekends a year across the country, but this is their first time in the Indian Valley.

Organizers said they'd love to bring them back and do this annually.

The next time you can see them in the area will be in Altoona for the Double-A All-Star game in July.

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