NEW YORK, NY / ACCESSWIRE / August 7, 2020 / When it comes to marking anniversaries, these are special dates that we celebrate important moments in our lives. For successful entrepreneur Chris Graffagnino, he marks July 20 as an important date to look back to. This year, he celebrated ten years of his ‘Alive Day,' the day he almost lost his life in combat.
When it comes to risk management and business development, Chris Graffagnino is the name to look up to. He has developed niche products and services in the crisis management space on and off Wall Street, including security evacuation and repatriation services. He is the co-founder of a global risk solutions company and has recently taken his business acumen to the spotlight by founding Settle4Success, a mentorship program aimed at helping young entrepreneurs launch their own businesses. Chris was also named Yahoo Finance's Top 10 Most Influential People and Top 10 Mentors to Follow lists for 2020. A US Army veteran and Purple Heart recipient, Chris attributes much of his success to the battlefields of Afghanistan.
Chris looks back ten years ago as a reminder of survival and strength when he almost lost his life in his line of duty. In 2010, Chris was an Army Specialist assigned to the Connecticut National Guard as an Infantryman. He was part of the 86th Mountain Brigade Combat Team, 1st Battalion, 102nd Infantry deployed to Afghanistan in early 2010 as part of a 30,000-troop surge. Graffagnino and his Delta Company comrades spent most of the year in Nuristan Province, operating in the rugged Hindu Kush mountain range.
"I learned a lot from the men I was with," Graffagnino shares. "We lived together, we fought together, and we bled together. I served and learned a great deal from some of the best patriots this country has to offer."
The Delta company he was with would spend most of their deployment under attack. In fact, they were engaged by the enemy for 16 days in a row in one summer in 2010. In the same year on July 20, Chris and a team of soldiers were conducting a patrol in an enemy-sympathized village. They were outnumbered and disadvantaged in terrain, but they held their ground.
"We took heavy fire," Graffagnino recalls. "I looked to my left and my team leader was shot in the neck. He was such an animal, he brushed it off and kept us in the fight."
Shortly thereafter, Chris felt a sting in his leg and - with explosions going off around him - was propelled about 30-feet down the side of the mountain ridge where he and the rest of the Delta company were fighting on. He held on to his life and hoped he'd survive. As the American wounded piled up, the boys were medically evacuated from the village that was still under heavy fire and hoping he could make it out alive, that is when Graffagnio's truck struck an improvised explosive device. To this day, Chris never thought he'd survive, but he did, and along with several others, they were awarded the Purple Heart for wounds sustained in combat.
"Being in many tough spots throughout my military career exposed me to situations where I was forced to adapt or die," says Chris. "Over this time I developed new skills in critical thinking, leadership, and motivation to accomplish goals."
For Chris, July 20 was his day of survival, but it was also the beginning of a lifelong journey of taking those painful lessons and reminders of bravery into an everyday reason to keep going.
Learn more about Chris and his latest venture at Settle4Success on their website.
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