Marine Sergeant Nick Kimmel: Looking Forward to Forever

In 2011, Sergeant Nick Kimmel and his unit were in the process of building a patrol base in Afghanistan when the unthinkable happened.  

Nick, standing on the forks of a tram to ensure the guard’s roof was square, jumped off, expecting to land on the ground and continue his work alongside his team. Instead, he hit a 40-pound improvised explosive device (IED). Instantly, the IED exploded. Nick was knocked unconscious and thrown into the air as his fellow Marines immediately rushed to his aid. When he woke up days later at Walter Reed National Medical Center back in the States, Nick learned that he’d suffered the loss of his left arm and both of his legs.  

In the months that followed, Nick underwent numerous surgeries — scheduled every other day for the first month — and began extensive rehabilitation, during which Semper Fi & America’s Fund helped with anything that he and his family needed to allow the focus to remain on Nick’s ongoing recovery.   

“Since then, they have never failed to deliver … Semper Fi & America’s Fund is an organization whose sole goal is to assist veterans in any way they need,” said Nick.  

Seven months later, Nick defied the odds when he began walking on prosthetics, an achievement that his doctors expected to take much longer. Inspired by Nick’s incredible perseverance, a trait exemplified by his 5+ years in service to our country, The Fund has continued alongside him by providing financial support as well as opportunities for Nick to pursue a new passion — adaptive golf.  

An avid athlete who grew up playing multiple sports and whose talent for basketball earned him a college scholarship, Nick is not only a treasured participant of many Team Semper Fi golf events, but he’s also “working my way on the adaptive world golf ranking and competing in international events,” he said, grateful for the opportunity to proudly represent his country once again as a U.S. athlete on the world stage.  

As Nick works each day to meet these incredible goals, The Fund is honored to support him, his passion for life making what many deemed impossible to come true.  

“In any hardship, it is what it is,” said Nick, his continued growth and endless drive serving as an example of what it means to never give up in the face of difficulties. “All you can do is push forward.” 

This past Memorial Day, Nick became a father when his wife gave birth to their first child – a precious little girl. After all Nick has been through, this is what becoming a dad and celebrating his first Father’s Day means to him.  

” I have always wanted to be a dad so it’s a relief and it’s exciting that it has finally happened, and now I’m looking forward to forever.” 


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