Nightly News   |  April 26, 2013

Wounded vets offer advice to Boston Marathon victims

Veterans from the Semper Fi Fund, a nonprofit that provides financial support to injured soldiers, visited survivors of the Boston bombings, providing hope and support. NBC’s Katy Tur reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> finally tonight our friday night making a difference report. for the worst possible reasons like two wars fought over the past decade we have a lot of americans in this country who can teach a lot to the surviving victims of the boston bombing. they are veterans anded to boston as if fo r duty. we get their story tonight from nbc's katy tur.

>> reporter: it started with tears and questions.

>> i feel like i can't do fig right now.

>> reporter: right now, yes. i'm telling you with all my heart you are going to be more independent than you ever were.

>> reporter: sergeant gabe martinez only just met celeste celeste corcoran. a double amputee gabe lost both legs to a roadside ied in afghanistan in 2010 . celeste lost her legs when the finish line of the boston marathon became a war zone .

>> we have the same injuries. just to be on that level with somebody, it really gave me, you know, the platform to speak from the heart and tell her how it's going to be.

>> reporter: these people lost their limbs from ieds. does that make it more personal?

>> it does.

>> reporter: sergeant b.j. ganam lost a leg to an ied. he, gabe and others are visiting the boston bomb survivors offering not just financial support but real life advice.

>> their whole lives are going to change. it's not just to get out of the hospital, heal and throw a prosthetic on, wham, bam, thank you ma'am and they're done. it's life.

>> reporter: roseann moved to a rehab center this week. her right leg was amputated above her knee. she calls semper fi an inspiration.

>> i'm lucky to be alive. what can you say? you can't go backwards. you can only move forwards. that's the direction i'm going.

>> this isn't the end. this is the beginning.

>> reporter: as for gabe and celeste, they spoke for only a few minutes. what started with tears and questions ended in laughter and a lifetime bond.

>> not only do they have strong accents, they have a strong spirit.

>> reporter: katy tur, nbc news, boston .