MUNFORD, TN (abc24.com) - It's been a trying year for wounded west Tennessee Marine Christian Brown. The war hero spent 2012 fighting to recover from an IED explosion in Afghanistan that took both his legs.
The story of Brown's recovery has been closely followed all across the Mid-South and in his hometown of Munford. Brown has big plans for the New Year.
Brown was injured in September 2011. He spent weeks fighting for his life, then months learning a whole new way of life without his legs. He's home in Tennessee for the holidays and looking ahead to 2013.
"I'm a religious hunter. I love hunting. It's a way to get close to buddies," Brown tells abc24.com. "I plan on doing that 'til the last day of the season because I missed so much."
Missed while he was fighting to live, then adjusting to a new way of life. Brown says he remembers the accident that changed his future forever.
"I was conscious. I remember the whole thing," he says. He was awake during the explosion. "I thought my Marines got hit because of the explosion and I blew back. I was trying to rock myself to get up, I realized I couldn't get up. I was the one that got hit."
Brown's fought hard to recover. He's facing the New Year with similar determination.
"This is not the end of me. I've got new goals." Goals that incorporate his love of hunting, with a new desire to help other injured service members heal.
"I plan on buying a patch of land and making that fully accessible to handicapped vets so they can go on hunting trips and enjoy the experience like I do and get that same healing."
"I figure if it's something that can heal my well-being and keep my mind right and off the negative, then if I can do that for somebody else it will make my injuries worthwhile."
They're big plans for the Marine, and Brown doesn't want to do it alone. "I want to hopefully get people to partnership with me so I can put that money toward that accomplishment. I think it will be just as satisfying for me as it will for them."
Brown still travels for therapy in Washington D.C. Another personal goal he has is to master using his prosthetics with knees. He says he'll be working on walking as much as he can so, as he puts it, he can "get vertical" whenever he likes.