A movie scene’
Germany for definitive surgery where a titanium rod was inserted to hold his hip and femur together.
After that, he was brought back to North Shore Private Hospital in Sydney and a naval hospital, before commencing intensive rehab.
It was six weeks before he walked again and six months before he redeployed.
Back in Afghanistan, Elliott was about to pass through the gate at Tarin Kowt for his platoon’s first “gig” of the deployment, when he realised he “couldn’t do it”.
“That was the hardest decision of my life,” he said.
Having trained and deployed together, Elliott and Tieche were already firm friends, sharing a love of surfing and “screamo” bands before forging a lifelong bond in the dirt that day 11 years ago.
“It definitely brought us closer. He’s the person who saved my life,” Elliott said.
“It’s a pretty special thing. Not many people would have that. Although we don’t travel and see each other we’ll always be friends.
“That will stay forever.”