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Achieving Triumphs Over Tragedies


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This week’s guest is an inspiration for all, spreading the message of living to the fullest, regardless of what life may throw at you. A recalibrated warrior, motivational speaker, actor, and author, retired U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne is an advocate for veterans and amputees.

Mills’s motto is “Never give up. Never quit.” He uses his own experience defying odds to inspire others to persevere. Listen to this week’s episode to learn how you can overcome life’s challenges!


On his third tour of Afghanistan, Mills was promoted to a squad leader position, making him the third-highest-ranking non-commissioned officer in his unit. During a short hold on April 10, 2012, Mills’s backpack landed on a bomb. 

The explosion took off his right arm and leg instantly. His left leg and arm were badly broken and later amputated. Now a quadruple amputee, Mills struggled with his faith, questioning why this catastrophe had happened to him.

Throughout the process of his recovery, Mills’s wife stood by him, and Mills learned to stop asking “why” and live in the present.


Once he accepted his new normal, Mills turned his focus to determining how he could recalibrate his life rather than remaining “wounded.” 

With that positive mindset, Mills focused on getting to the root of who he was and what he wanted to do in a recalibrated life. He could no longer be a soldier as he had felt he was meant to be. However, after seeing how some amazing organizations helped him and his family, Mills and his wife wanted to do something to give back.


As part of their endeavor to give back, Mills and his wife founded the Travis Mills Foundation. They began by creating and distributing care packages, then subsequently expanded to bringing together families of veterans and amputees for healing and community-building trips. They opened their own facility for the trips in 2017, and now bring eight families there each week.

At the Travis Mills Retreats, they “show them [how] to live life off the sidelines no matter what their injuries are,” encouraging them to adopt the slogan, “Never give up. Never quit.”

The Mills have focused on accessibility in the program: “Barrier-free is what we strive for, and we let the whole family do it as a unit, which is life-changing.”

Tune into this week’s episode to learn more about Mills’s journey and what you can do to overcome obstacles and live for the present!

Interested in learning how other veterans are creating a better world through their service? Check out how this former Navy Seal practices lifelong learning with a warrior mentality.

Listen to this episode to learn about...

  • [1:26] Why Mills joined the military
  • [2:48] Mills’s injuries
  • [6:15] How to stop asking “why”
  • [7:34] How to accept a new normal
  • [9:59] Helping others see the real Travis Mills
  • [12:40] Mills’s thoughts on the VA and veteran resources
  • [19:58] Allowing space for others’ grief and struggles
  • [23:25] Helping others through the Travis Mills Foundation

Tune into the Members Only episode to learn Mills’s advice for those in physical or emotional battles who want to transition to a better place.