Pa Modou Njie

From Bimingham

Hero: Pa Modou Njie

Pte Pa Modou Njie of 1 Mercian, a popular and cheerful soldier from The Gambia, was blown up whilst on routine foot patrol, resulting in the loss of both legs in September 2010.

This was Pa’s third brush with death, as he has previously been pinned down in the open in a Taliban ambush, and on another occasion had been the target of an RPG (rocket) attack which narrowly missed him.He had less than a month to go before the end of his six month tour and was just 20.

Pa was in Queen Elizabeth’s Hospital in Birmingham for three weeks immediately following his return to the UK, then began a full time rehabilitation programme at the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre, Headley Court. He said of Headley Court “It is probably one of the best rehabilitation centres in the world. Everyone there is always in such high spirits, and so helpful too”.

Pa, a single man, admits that his recovery was difficult to start with but is amazingly optimistic about life, feeling he is lucky to be alive following his other near misses on operations.

Persimmon Homes adapted a new build home to suit his individual requirements, and called it the ‘Haig Model” after Haig Housing Trust, which assisted Pa in the purchase of this property through its Shared Ownership Scheme. The three bedroom house has been converted upstairs to allow easier access, knocking two of the bedrooms into one large room, and turning the bathroom into an en-suite wet room. The third bedroom and second bathroom remain unchanged for guest use, and Haig Housing Trust will fit a stair lift. The house was ready for Pa in October 2011 and he has recently gained an accountancy degree from Aston University.

Pa is grateful to HHT for our help and said “Thank you all your help over my new Persimmon house in Birmingham. It is great that they are going to adapt the first floor as they build it. As you know I am currently studying for an accountancy A Level with the aim of applying to Aston University to study accountancy starting in September 2012, and the house should give me a firm base from which to begin a new life. It’s also good to know that I can buy the rest of the house from HHT when I can and that in the meantime HHT will maintain the property, and will help me again if I need to move in the future”.

8th August - Birmingham Mail features Pa