Andy Allen – AAVS

Andy Allen - pic (c) Howard Walker

Ranger Andy Allen was hit by an IED (Improvised Explosive Device) in 2008 whilst on tour in Afghanistan.

The force of the horrific blast lifted him off the ground and tore off his right leg it also burnt his corneas, leaving Andy blind. By complete chance, one of Andy’s comrades had been wearing a camera that was attached to his body armour and the events of that day were caught on film.

The incredible footage was used by the BBC for the Bafta winning documentary Wounded. 

For seven weeks Andy was kept sedated while surgeons worked to remove the dirt from his wounds and fought to keep them infection free. 

Ten days after he was brought in they were forced to amputate his leg. Not only has Andy had to learn to walk again, he also had to adjust to losing his sight.

Although an operation has restored some vision, his world remains blurred and distorted, he says this has been his biggest challenge. 

Several years on, Andy has identified a number of issues where support for veterans living in Northern Ireland does not meet their need.

With the help of a number of ex-servicemen and women, Andy has created his own Veterans charity, responding to the needs of Veterans and their families living in Northern Ireland.