Sergeant First Class (SFC) Ryan Hendrickson is a determined, and courageous soldier -- a Green Beret clearing the way for his twelve-man team while conducting combat operations against the Taliban. As the "tip of the spear," his role is to insure the route taken by U.S. and Afghan troops are free of IEDs -- improvised explosive devices. Many soldiers do not survive their last step; those who do often lose at least one limb.
While rescuing an Afghan soldier outside a mud-hut compound in 2010 -- knowing that he was in "uncleared" territory -- Ryan stepped on an IED with his right foot. The device exploded, leaving his foot dangling at the end of his leg.
American soldiers losing a limb is an all-too-common occurrence. But what makes Ryan's story different is that after undergoing two dozen surgeries and a tortuous rehabilitation, he was medically retired but fought to return to active duty. Multiple skin grafts to his lower leg and right foot successfully reattached his lower leg, and he was aided in his recovery by wearing a new prosthetic device known as an IDEO (Intrepid Dynamic Exoskeletal Orthosis). Once he passed a series of crucial physical tests, Ryan was able to rejoin the Green Berets within a year and physically perform his duties, redeploying to Afghanistan in March 2012.
In 2016, he volunteered to return to Afghanistan with Bravo Company, 2nd Battalion, 7th Special Forces Group. During a firefight with the Taliban, he risked his life under heavy enemy fire to rescue three Afghan soldiers cut off from friendly forces and return the bodies of two dead Afghan soldiers under the ethos that "no one gets left behind." For his heroic efforts on the battlefield, SFC Ryan Hendrickson was awarded a Silver Star, the nation's third-highest award for valor.
An engaging and harrowing account, Tip of the Spear tells the amazing story of one Green Beret's indomitable spirit.
About the Author
Ryan Hendrickson is a Special Forces Engineer in the U.S. Army. Ryan transferred over to the Army in 2008 after completing enlistments in both the Navy and Air Force. Ryan has many military deployments including Iraq, Afghanistan, and several South and Central American countries. Ryan's decorations include the Silver Star, four Bronze Stars, a Purple Heart, and an Army Commendation Medal with Valor. He lives in Florida.
Wanted to give an update on my planning progress heading back to Ukraine. This next trip will be a humanitarian mine and boobytrap removal mission. I am in the fundraiser process now for Tip of the Spear landmine Removal Group so please watch and spread the word. My linktr.ee is https://linktr.ee/rmhendricksonvlg Thank you
If the A/C in your RV is going to go out, sure glad it happened in the middle of summer in Florida and not November or December cause what fun is that? At least I got to show you all how a Wrong Step shirt looks all sweaty🤣
Although I’ve been home for 2 weeks, it’s a little gut check watching areas like Severodonetsk where on May 9th we delivered food, aid but mainly HOPE, fall to Russian forces as they push through Donbas.
Little piece of me will remain in Ukraine but today I do not say good by but see you later. I’m heading across the border on my way home and will start planning my next mission to help in Ukraine. YWAM Kiev, see you soon.
If there is a need for food, aid and support YWAM Kiev will respond. This was my trip to Severodonetsk to deliver food and aid. So much is needed in one of the hottest areas in Ukraine right now, keep praying for the innocent civilians caught in the middle.
Got the blood pumping a bit with some artillery that was close enough to feel the over pressure but still far enough away to be safe. The road in is never easy but YWAM is reaching people in the places that need it most. Severodonetsk, Donbas Region, you have my respect.
Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These cookies do not store any personal information.
Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website.