Batesville Herald Tribune, Batesville, Indiana


December 17, 2013

Marine triumphs over war wounds

Talk about overcoming adversity. U.S. Marine Cpl. Joshua Bleill could write a book about it.

In fact, he has, “One Step at a Time,” one of 25 nominated for a 2013-14 Eliot Rosewater Indiana High School Book Award. The 206-page nonfiction book, written with Mark Tabb, is available at The Bookshelf locally.

The Carmel resident was at Batesville High School Dec. 12 to give students a pep talk about rising above difficult situations.

After losing both legs above the knees in Iraq Oct. 15, 2006, he now is an Indianapolis Colts community spokesperson.

Walking to the middle of the gym using a cane, Bleill broke the ice by chatting about the cold weather. “I can’t even feel my feet!” he announced as the students laughed. He remembered listening to a speaker while in high school who had lost both legs. “I never thought I would connect that well with a speaker.”

After graduating from Greenfield Central High School, the spokesperson attended Purdue University and worked for an insurance company. As he watched events of Sept. 11 unfold on TV, “something inside of me clicked.” He thought, “‘I could serve this country. I could give back,’” like his father and grandfather, who were in the military during wars.

At 27, Bleill was sent to boot camp and was skeptical as 17- and 18-year-olds surrounded him.

“These were the guys I was going to trust my life to?” Thinking the 13 weeks was “so hard” at the time, the author realized later drill instructors “wanted me to be prepared. Sometimes the people who push us the hardest are the people who love us the most.”

After being a Marine Reservist for a year and a half, he received a January 2006 phone call “I was waiting for. I wanted to be sent” to a combat zone. “I was scared, I was nervous.”

Text Only
  • nws - bv080114 - roell car Retired farmer wins a new car Floyd Roell had a feeling. Last year, he bought a ticket for the St. Jude Dream Home Giveaway, but had no premonition. This year, the giveaway kept popping up in front of his face, reminding him about his granddaughter, but still no sixth sense.“This

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv072914 - kids kick drugs (new) 'You can say no' to drugs About 50 youngsters participated in the Southeastern Indiana YMCA’s Kids Kick Drugs program July 26. Master George Dwenger (a person receives the title of Master after completing the 4th Degree Black Belt) told the youngsters, “First and most importa

    July 29, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv070814 - muething RAA gave theater founder his start When John Leo Muething was 5 and living in Batesville, his three older siblings and parents, Dr. Steve and Meg Muething, starred in the Rural Alliance for the Arts production of “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” but, much to his dismay,

    July 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv070814 - jeffers West Point graduation Jeffers savors West Point experience Tom Jeffers, a 2010 Batesville High School graduate, recently graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point. The Fort Sill, Oklahoma, resident is the son of former Batesville residents Tom and Kathleen Jeffers, Alexandria, Virginia,

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv062714 - STEM - sara bauer Students learn valuable STEM skills Two area students attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point’s Middle School STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) Workshop June 2-5.Alexandra Cottingham, Batesville, daughter of Rebecca Krieger Cottingham and Michael Cottingham,

    June 27, 2014 2 Photos

  • nws - bv062014 - Eckstein family Cancer hits home for local family Cancer survivors and those who have lost their fight with the disease will be honored during the June 21-22 Ripley County Relay for Life. One local individual who will be remembered is Mark Eckstein, Batesville, who worked for the Batesville Water an

    June 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv061314 - Wilson, Alex Wilson explores CIA and Ukraine Next month in Chicago, Alex Wilson will start working as an investment banking analyst at Bank of Montreal (BMO), doing financial analysis and modeling for a group within the Capital Markets division. The 2010 Batesville High School graduate just ear

    June 13, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv060614 - Betts in Scotland Student helps mastermind museum exhibit Tomorrow Alex Betts, a 2009 Batesville High School graduate, will be standing at a museum door in England, welcoming his family (parents Bill and George Ann Betts and brothers Jairus, 19, and Arno, 14) to an exhibit he helped create. "Diving into Dur

    June 6, 2014 3 Photos

  • nws - bv051614 - McDonough speaking Detective recalls working with Princess Diana BROOKVILLE - Rich McDonough has had an exciting career as a private detective, working for various celebrities and political figures. He told the story about one of his most memorable clients, the late Princess Diana of Wales, on April 16 as part of

    May 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • nws - bv050214 - Kreinhop, Bertha with book Cancer battle recounted in book

    May 2, 2014 1 Photo