Staff Sergeant Charlie Linville, U.S. Marine Corps
Currently serving at: Balboa Naval Medical Center Wounded Warrior Battalion, CA
Children: 2 daughters, age 5 and 2
Nominated by: Amanda Linville
Watch Linville Finalist Video >>
> Describe Ssgt Linville's ongoing commitment and dedication to his children.
Ssgt Linville has been a dedicated father from the second his first daughter was born. Most recently he had his right leg amputated below the knee due to injuries sustained in Afghanistan. One day post surgery Ssgt Linville refused to miss his oldest daughter's first karate competition and he left the hospital so that he could attend the competition. One day after having his leg cut off he was sitting in his wheelchair front and center to watch his daughter compete. He was in severe pain and still out of it from surgery but he sat there and rooted for his daughter! Additionally, day to day, Ssgt Linville fights through the pain of developing HO (heterotopic ossification) in his leg so that he can take his daughter to karate, golf, and football. He helped coach his daughter's football team so that he could spend more time with her. Every day he fights through the pain of his injuries to keep up with his daughters and take them to the pool, to the zoo, to school, to football, and all of their activities and he plays with them no matter how much pain he is in! He is incredible!
> Describe Ssgt Linville’s extraordinary efforts to father from a distance during military separation.
During military separation Ssgt Linville always took time to record stories for his two daughters. He also videoed himself reading and leaving the girls a sweet message discussing how much he missed the girls. Additionally, he always sent the girls special cards, he skyped when he could, and he helped create a countdown chain for the girls. Ssgt Linville always made a special effort to bring his daughters back something special from where ever he was for training or deployment. He always sent the girls special letters addressed to them so they had special mail from Afghanistan or Iraq! He would wait in line as an infantryman for hours just to make a five minute phone call to check in on the kids.
> Describe Ssgt Linville’s efforts to successfully balance military life and family life.
Ssgt Linville has proven himself to be a dutiful marine even post injury. He completes his missions in a timely manner and returns home to his family as quickly as possible. He always makes the time he has with his children special. They read together and he has his oldest read to him so that he can help her with school. They swim together, and they go to the zoo together. Ssgt Linville always tries to plan something fun or special that is just for him and his family. We spend a lot of time together doing outdoor things like skiing, golfing, going to the beach, going to the zoo, riding bikes, playing football, taking pictures, playing at the park, and going new places! Ssgt Linville always puts his girls first and does whatever he can to see them smile. Even though he is in pain everyday as a result of his combat injuries, he fights through the pain so that his children always see him smiling and doing the things they love. He fights every day to prove to his children that he is not handicapped and that if they put their minds to it, a person can accomplish their goals no matter what holds them back! He also ensures that he incorporates his family into his military obligations and invites them to family day and other battalion events that we are all able to be apart of. Additionally, Ssgt Linville has been a mentor for other wounded marines and has invited those wounded and their families into his home to offer friendship, support, and baby sitting etc.
> Describe Ssgt Linville's efforts to mentor/strengthen other military fathers and/or military children who are separated from their fathers.
Ssgt Linville has gone into my classroom of students and talked about his experiences being a deployed dad in order to provide comfort to those military children with deployed parents. He spent extra time with individual students talking about their parents and how they feel and telling them amazing stories about his job and what he's done. Additionally, he has helped break the ice with some children who were unable to connect with anyone else because they were so upset about their parent being away. Further, Ssgt Linville has been a role model in the wounded warrior community. He has always maintained an open door with other wounded and welcomed them into his home and provided babysitting services even though he himself is also injured. He has always helped out other wounded personnel and their families and fought for their benefits and well-being. He is a man to look up to in his own family and among other families that know of him.
> Are there any unique elements to Ssgt Linville's story that make him stand out?
Ssgt Linville is a combat wounded marine who lost his right leg, two fingers on his right hand, sustained a traumatic brain injury, suffers from PTSD, left shoulder arthitis, and spinal radiculopathy that causes him severe pain everyday. In spite of this pain, Ssgt Linville carries on and performs his parental duties above and beyond the call of duty. He is an amazing father who has sacrificed everything for his own children, and the children of his fallen marines. He has been a good citizen and volunteered much of his time to help build homes for underprivilidged families and homeless youths. He has participated in collecting Toys for Tots for underprivilidged youth. He has been a role model for his own children, children and marines of other wounded, and also for his community. His daugher's karate gym instructors were so impressed by his determination to be present for his daughter's first competition and every training day despite having had surgery only a day before that they named a special end of the year award after him, called the Charlie Linville award. This award stands for amazing and triumphant character. Charlie Linville is the best father a child could hope for, and even more so, he is an excellent male role model for children of all families. He sacrificed almost his life, certainly his limb, and his own safety to set a good example for his children all the while working to provide everything for his family. Now that he is home, he takes every extra second he can to hug his daughters just a little longer, because he knows the reality of combat and how short life truly is. He is a very deserving father. He has done things for his children that no civilian, nor some servicemembers could ever comprehend.