J.R. Martinez recounts military, life experiences at NPGA Propane Expo

January 22, 2019 By    

Jose Rene “J.R.” Martinez – actor, author, motivational speaker and retired U.S. Army soldier – served as the keynote speaker for the 2019 National Propane Gas Association’s (NPGA) Southeastern Convention & International Propane Expo.

Headshot: JR Martinez

J.R. Martinez

Martinez spoke for an hour about his life story. After being deployed to Iraq in March of 2003, he sustained severe burns to over 34 percent of his body when his Humvee hit a roadside bomb. He was trapped inside the vehicle and thought he was going to die. He spent three weeks in a medically induced coma and later received a medical discharge from the Army.

During the difficult process, he received inspiration from his mom, who told him to believe, have faith and try to be positive.

Since his recovery, Martinez has become a highly sought-after motivational speaker, a role he undertook at age 20. He has traveled the country speaking about his experiences to corporations, veterans groups, schools and other organizations.

“It’s important to all of us, when talking about veterans, to expand our thought process of what a veteran looks like,” Martinez told the audience, noting how not all veterans have visible scars or wounds.

In 2008, Martinez began his acting career on the Emmy Award-winning daytime drama “All My Children.” Since then, he’s appeared on numerous other shows, including as the season 13 champion on “Dancing with the Stars.”

In addition, Martinez is the author of the New York Times bestseller “Full of Heart: My Story of Survival, Strength, and Spirit.” He also serves as a spokesperson for Operation Finally Home, as well as for the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors and Glasswing International.

“Understand the service you bring to people on a daily basis,” he told the propane industry audience.

*Featured logo: NPGA

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About the Author:

Joe McCarthy was an associate editor at LP Gas Magazine.

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