“Never leave a man behind” may not be an official military motto, but it’s one most soldiers take to heart, and it’s something U.S. Army Captain Sarah Cudd experienced firsthand.
Cudd was working to earn the Expert Field Medical Badge, an honor given to military medical personnel who complete a set of grueling written and physical tests.
The process is not for the faint of heart. Not only are candidates evaluated on their successful completion of tactical combat casualty care and medical and casualty evacuation but, according to the U.S. Army website, they are also “tested on how to successfully communicate over a radio; proficiency in warrior tasks and drills such as chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear hazards; reacting to enemy contact; day and night land navigation; and a written test.”
To cap it all off, soldiers have to complete a 12-mile march carrying 70 pounds of gear – in three hours or less!
The program typically has an 80 percent attrition rate and only three percent of the Army’s medical community actually completes it and earns the badge, but Captain Cudd was determined to be part of that three percent.
Cudd had already made her way through the exhausting series of exams and evaluations and only had one test left to go: the march.
At 2 hours and 45 minutes, Cudd was just a few yards away from the finish line, but her body had reached its limit. As she tried to will herself forward, her legs gave way and she collapsed on the ground.
But that’s when something amazing happened. Watch the video below to see it for yourself!