Tuning out the pounding of his own heartbeat, nerves tense as a young Air Force explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) officer disarms bombs in some of Southwest Asia’s most dangerous warzones.
A sudden increased heart rate and blood flow kicks in as adrenaline rush reverberates through his body. Internally, things are chaotic, but the madness is masked by the man’s calm, humorous demeanor, which is a key character trait to his life-saving tactics.
Despite his setback of Tourette syndrome, which is a nervous system disorder involving repetitive movements or unwanted sounds, his physical tics didn’t prevent his ability to neutralize bombs from ‘tick-tick-booming.’
It takes patience, finesse, and skill to make a career out of defusing bombs, and for Lt. Col. Kelly Hannum, doing so while coping with Tourette’s has been no small feat.