AUGUSTA, Ga. (WJBF) – This month we had the honor of speaking with Dr. Lisa Maddox.
Dr. Maddox is an Augusta native whose dreams of serving her country became a reality.
“I was a senior girl scout and we did a trip to Washington D.C. as tourist and I got to go see the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in arlington cemetery, and I was there and I saw that and it blew me away because I thought, this is an unknown person, and they could be black, yellow, white, purple, green, blue, doesn’t matter, and the respect that was paid to that person, just because they served their country, and they gave their life, I was like, I want to be a part of that.”
After college Maddox was commissioned to Military intelligence.
“I did that for two years and then ended up going to medical school, and I originally suited for orthopedic surgery, and I was in orthopaedics but I ended up getting called back for active duty, so I went back, and finished out my time as a general medical officer.”
Maddox developed “Complex Regional Pain Syndrome,” and would end up losing a leg, but she didn’t let that slow her down. She’s very active in several sports and recently won a gold medal in pickleball at the National Veterans Wheelchair games.
“I play on Tuesday afternoons with the paralyzed veterans of America over at Riverview on Tuesdays, and I started playing in March, and I also play tennis, so there’s a lot of crossover, and the biggest thing is wheelchair movement, and I started playing in March, and the National Veterans WheelChair games were in July, and one of the guys I play with wanted to partner up, and we ended up winning gold there and it was a lot of fun.”
Maddox hopes her story inspires others.
“When I was still working at the VA I would have patients that would come in, and they would say doc, I saw you in the paper, and if you can do it, I can do it, and that was a huge thing to me because it’s getting people out, out of their house out of their heads, and doing something physical and realizing that regardless of what’s going on in their life, and in their body, they can still go and play sports. It may look a little different than it did when they were 17, but just to get out and be able to compete and have that competitive spirit, it helps you get out of those dark places.”
It’s because of her time working with veterans at the VA, serving her country, and inspiring others why we had to surprise Lisa Maddox with the Salute to Service award.
If you know someone who you think should be nominated for the Salute to Service Award you can do it RIGHT HERE.