Strictly Come Dancing star JJ Chalmers has spoken of surviving the Afghanistan explosion which killed three people, saying he 'should be in a box in the ground'.
The 33-year-old Royal Marines veteran saw action in the Middle East during his time fighting for his country, and opened up recently about the Helmand blast which left his pals dead.
His colleagues Marine Sam Alexander and Lt Ollie Augustin, along with an Afghan interpreter died, while Chalmers lost two fingers and had his elbow disintegrated.
He also suffered with a crushed eye socket and burst eardrums.
Speaking about his recovery to The Sun, he said: "I remember in one of my earliest physio sessions being asked to stand on my tiptoes and I was so weak that I couldn't even do that.
"At that point you really do begin to question yourself and the first time I looked at myself in a mirror head to toe, I was shocked at the damage that had been done to my body."
Discussing the 2011 explosion, he added: "It was also the huge realisation of how close I came to going the other way, especially when you know that that’s the case for a couple of my friends — that actually, as bad as it is, it’s still better than the alternative.
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"I should be in a box in the ground but I’m not, so you’ve got that driving you."
Scottish-born Chalmers undertook a gruelling recovery process, and went on to compete in the Invictus Games in 2014.
He later moved into a media career, enjoying stints as a presenter on the 2016 Summer Paralympics and the 2017 Invictus Games.
This month he was partnered with professional dancer Amy Dowden for the eighteenth series of Strictly.
The popular BBC dance show airs Saturday (24 October) at 7.25pm on BBC One.
Watch: JJ Chalmers talks Strictly