The Boise Marine who became the first combat-wounded veteran to summit Mount Everest in May is now back home in the Treasure Valley.
Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Charlie Linville’s flight landed in Boise around 9:30 Tuesday night and he was welcomed by a crowd of family members and friends.
Linville says he hopes his quest to summit Everest inspires people to not just set goals, but a specific kind of goal.
“I’d really like people to take away that anything is possible,” Linville said after arriving at the airport. “You have to set your goal big, not small, and understand that you’re going to get roadblocks along the way. But, if you stick to it, eventually you’ll get what you want in life.”
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If anyone knows a thing or two about “sticking to it,” it’s Linville. He’s the first combat-wounded veteran to reach the Everest summit, according to The Heroes Project. His right leg is amputated below the knee after he stepped on an unexploded bomb in Afghanistan in 2011.
This was the third attempt for Linville, after attempts in 2014 and 2015 were canceled due to natural disasters.
In 2014, Linville’s group was roughly one mile away when an avalanche on the mountain took sixteen lives.
“Just because there was one, albeit severe, incident on the mountain, it’s not going to force me to stop climbing,” Linville said in 2014 after returning from his first attempt. “One day I will stand on the top of Mt. Everest.”
The next year, Linville returned to the base camp only to be stopped once again, this time because of a devastating earthquake.
When he returned to Boise in 2015, he kept his sights on the summit, determined to return.
“Am I going back next year? Yeah, I heard the third time was a charm!” Linville said in 2015. “No wounded veteran has ever done it, and I am definitely going to try again. I mean I’ve done two years of life this far what’s another year?”
Linville hopes to inspire other wounded veterans never to let physical disabilities interfere with their determination.
“You know, it’s possible for everybody you just have to be mentally tough and find that hope and inspiration and then run with it,” Linville said. “t’s just whether or not you’re up for the challenge.”
Statesman staff contributed.