30 year old Marine Lance Corporal Chris Hahn wants people to say, “That guy is strong.”
Chris joined the Marine Corps in 2004. He went to boot camp at Camp Pendleton and later artillery school. In 2005 the 6’2” 190 pound Marine and his company joined the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit and deployed to Iraq. There were no artillery units, so Chris deployed as an 0311, a Marine Corps Rifleman, and was assigned to a security detail in Hit, Iraq.
Chris and his fellow Marines participated in numerous foot and vehicle patrols while deployed in Iraq. On January 30, 2006, Chris’ unit went on a night parol to drop off a squad of Marines. Chris was manning a .50 caliber machine gun on a 7 ton troop vehicle. The convoy was moving down a narrow road when the troop transport truck that Chris was in veered of the edge. Chris was thrown from the vehicle which rolled over and crushed his left foot. Chris was immediately sent to a hospital in Bagdad and later returned stateside.
Chris went to the Naval Hospital in Bethesda, MD and was casted. He was then sent home to convalesce. While at home in Colorado, Chris visited two VA hospitals to check his recovery progress. Unfortunately, the tissue in Chris’ left heel became necrotic and when the cast was removed a large portion of his left heel sloughed off.
21 year old Marine Lance Corporal Chris Hahn was left with a decision: have a skin graft taken from his back to replace the tissue lost from the heel and walk with a cane for the rest of his life, or have a portion of his left leg amputated. At 21 years old Chris decided that he had to much that he wanted to accomplish to be debilitated. Chris chose the amputation.
Chris’ surgery went very well and he was on the long rehab road to recovery. However, like many servicemen and women after a long period of inactivity and subsequent disability, depression set in. Over the next several years Chris gained a lot of weight reaching an unhealthy 300 pounds. Life wasn’t all bad though! He married his lovely wife Rachel and had a two sons Rock and Holden. (Rock Hahn! Get it? Rock On!)
In 2013 with the support of his family, 28 year old Marine Corps Lance Corporal Chris Hahn decided enough was enough. At 21 he had made a decision that would keep him from being limited in his activity and now it was time to make good! Chris joined the Belton Community Center in Belton, Missouri, and in one year, lost 90 pounds! But, Chris wanted more! He wanted a challenge!
Along the way Chris had met strongman competitor Jason Price. Jason encouraged Chris to give strongman a try. In 2014 Chris started training at Jason’s house. Along with his training crew: Nate Butler, Sean Patterson, Eli Clark, Chris Holden and Ben Hill, Chris prepared for his first strongman contest. In April 2015, Chris competed with United States Strongman under State Rep Craig Hayes in Broken Arrow, OK.
After a PR 405 deadlift for 8 reps and an overall great day Chris was hooked. “I want people to say, ‘that guy is strong’ not, ‘that guy is pretty strong with one leg’. My training partners don’t treat me any differently. They push me and I push them. I love this sport and I plan on pushing to be the best. I want to motivate other people. My message is: there is no excuse.”
30 year old Marine Lance Corporal Chris Hahn will be competing in his second United States Strongman event, The Southern Missouri Strongman Challenge on June 20, 2015. Chris is an American hero. He and many like him are the reason we celebrate Memorial Day. His sacrifice and the sacrifice of so many others are the reason we are free! Thank you, Chris Hahn! Semper Fi! And, thanks to all of our veterans! God Bless you and your families!