A "Tribute for Heroes" winner will be featured in the July 22 issue of People, which hits newsstands Friday, July 12th, the week of the All-Star Game.
The three veterans recognized as Braves finalists include Brian Hicks of Pike Road, Ala., Thomas Lewis of Alpharetta, Ga., and Anthony Smith of Blytheville, Ark.
Smith was pronounced dead and placed in a body bag after a rocket-propelled grenade tore through his hip and stomach and shrapnel took his arm. After a nurse realized he was alive, he remained in a coma for 62 days and then endured years of rehab and surgeries. The 46-year-old veteran now teaches Tae-Kwon Do and Mixed Martial Arts to at-risk kids in Arkansas.
Lewis shattered numerous bones when he crashed his F-16 fighter jet in the desert during a practice flight. He proved doctors wrong when he began walking and flying again. Along with being a pilot for Air Tran/Southwest, he currently devotes his time to coaching youth sports teams and working with Habitat for Humanity.
During a 2003 deployment in Iraq, Hicks suffered an injury that led to his left leg being amputated. He has since completed 35 triathlons and eight marathons. In 2012, he was awarded the USA Triathlon Comeback of the Year Award. Along with serving as a resident engineer for the Army Corps of Engineers at Maxwell Air Force Base, he mentors other disabled veterans through the Wounded Warrior Project and CAST (Christian Amputee Support Team).
Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.