Page last updated at 11:12 GMT, Thursday, 30 July 2009 12:12 UK

New life 'tough' after losing limb

By Claire Marshall
Midlands correspondent, BBC News

Lieutenant Guy Disney: "You go from doing things at 100mph to sitting in a bed doing nothing"

Lieutenant Guy Disney, 27, rests a cup of tea on a low table and eases himself back in to an armchair in front of the open fire at his Cotswolds home.

The bandaged stump of his right leg sits on a pile of cushions in front of him.

Less than a month ago, he was on his first tour of duty with the Light Dragoons, in the front line of the war against the Taliban in Afghanistan.

He was leading a troop into a Taliban-controlled area in Helmand province, when his Spartan vehicle was struck by a rocket-propelled grenade.

'Saved my life'

Speaking to BBC News he said: "I felt a white heat. I looked down and there wasn't much there, just a bit of sinew and skin holding it on.

"A couple of guys in the back stuck a tourniquet on. They probably saved my life."

Pte Robert Laws, 18, of the Mercian Regiment, who was sitting behind Lt Disney, was killed in the attack.

Lt Disney was airlifted out and within two hours he was being operated on at Camp Bastion, the British base in Helmand.

The next day he was flown back to the UK, to Selly Oak Hospital in Birmingham. He stayed there for three weeks, before being allowed to go home last weekend.

He said: "The treatment was really good; we were looked after so well. The staff were so professional. There was a mix of military and civilian nurses and they worked together really well."

His family and his black Labrador, Twigga, are delighted and relieved to have him back.

'So positive'

His father, John Disney, a GP, said: "We are obviously saddened for him, but he's so positive that we feel very humble. I know that this will be a minor setback in his life."

Lt Disney admits to finding his changed life "tough".

He described the frustration of "going from 100 miles an hour to lying down; from commanding, to lying in bed - it's very tough.

"My soldiers are still out there now. I'd do anything to get back out there."

His brigade is scheduled to return to Afghanistan in 2012, and, with the advances in rehabilitation techniques and prosthetic limbs, Lt Disney aims to be with them.

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