Paul Jacobs

Rifleman Paul Jacobs was awarded the George Medal for bravery, having been blinded by a IED blast in 2009 while trying to save a colleague. He has since rebuilt his life, met his wife, climbed Mount Kilamanjaro and he aims to conquer Everest next year. He is a shining example of what can be achieved out of adversity.

< View All Speakers

Rifleman Paul Jacobs, of 2nd Battalion The Rifles was blinded by a Taliban bomb while on patrol in Afghanistan in 2009.

Commended for his'sheer personal courage and startling determination'that saw him awarded the George Medal for 'acts of bravery not in the face of the enemy'.

Paul was five months into his first tour of Afghanistan with 2nd Battalion The Rifles in August 2009, leading a patrol up an isolated alleyway in the Upper Sangin Valley, when an enormous explosion from a hidden bomb killed a colleague.

Paul was in the process of attempting to bring his colleague's body back to his comrades when second bomb went off. The second blast killed another British soldier and seriously injured Paul, who lost his right eye and was blinded in his left. Remarkably he was able to drag himself to a mine-free area of ground so that his colleagues could rescue him safely.

Paul was left in a coma for three weeks after the incident after he was flown home to Selly Oak hospital, Birmingham. Amazingly it was whilst in hospital that Paul met his now wife, Louise, who was treating him for his injuries at the time.

After being discharged from hospital Paul dedicated a significant amount of his time to raising money for St Dunstan's, an Armed Forces charity that helps ex-servicemen who have lost their sight. Remarkably he climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania with his father-in-law raising more than £5500 pounds for the charity. Paul's fund-raising adventures continued when he completed a 500-mile bicyle ride from Edinburgh to London using only his hands to propel to bike.

He has currently set himself the challenge of swimming the channel and climbing mount Everest within the next five years.

Paul's story is one that instils hope and motivation in all who hear it, believing that even in their own adversity opportunity can be born. While Paul lost his sight forever, through it he found his wife and now looks to achieve remarkable results through his fund-raising adventures.

more speakers Load more speakers