NEW YORK - Marine Corps Sgt. Kirstie Ennis and Air Force Senior Airman Katelyn Sheehan are as tough as they come. They’re both retired, but now they’re setting out to prove they can still do anything by climbing Alaska’s Denali.
If successful, they’ll be part of the first all-female veteran team to summit the highest peak in North America. Ennis, who lost her leg after a helicopter crash in Afghanistan, would also be the first female veteran amputee to complete the climb.
Sheehan has her own obstacles to overcome: she suffers from PTSD and a traumatic brain injury.
Both are climbing in support of Building Homes for Heroes, a charity that provides mortgage-free homes to veterans and their families. Recently, they were awarded $5,000 from the New York Fire Department toward their efforts.
The two say the climb is a chance to continue to serve, and to live their lives they way they always have: Never backing down from a challenge. They also have a message of inspiration.
“I hope people look at me and they watch me do this, and I hope they just say ‘Hey, I can do it; I can be just like her,’” Ennis told Fox 5 New York. “Or, ‘I can do it better than her.’”