Kirstie Ennis



Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Limb deficiency
Origin of Impairment

Further personal information

Partner Brian
Aspen, CO, USA
Athlete, Business Owner, Public Speaker, Veteran
Higher education
Business, Psychology - National University: San Diego, CA, USA

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
She began snowboarding in 2013 in Breckenridge, CO, United States of America.
Why this sport?
Despite growing up in Florida, United States of America and rarely having seen snow, she was approached by Disabled Sports USA who asked her to try para-snowboarding.

General interest

Hunting, rock climbing. (Instagram profile, 05 Dec 2016;, 18 Aug 2016)
Hero / Idol
Charlie Linville and Mark Zambon who have climbed Mount Everest and Mount Kilimanjaro respectively, and have both undergone leg amputations. (, 01 Sep 2016)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"There's never a reason to give up." (, 01 Jul 2016)
Other sports
She competed in rowing, swimming and outdoor cycling at the 2016 Invictus Games in Orlando, FL, United States of America. (, 30 Jun 2017)
Outside of sport, she would like to climb the highest peaks of each of the seven continents. (, 30 Jun 2017)
She was involved in a helicopter crash in 2012 while serving with the US Marines in Musa Qala, Afghanistan. She sustained injuries to her face, arms, jaw, legs, spinal cord and brain. In November 2015 she had her left leg amputated below the knee before having to have the limb amputated above the knee a month later due to infection. In total she underwent 40 surgeries and participated in speech therapy, physical therapy, occupational therapy, vestibular therapy, and cognitive therapy over a three year period. (, 02 Feb 2016;, 01 Nov 2015;, 30 Jun 2015;, 01 Oct 2015)
Other information
Before undergoing her first operation to amputate her leg, she participated in the 'Walking With The Wounded' charity event, hosted by British royal Prince Harry. The 72 day event involved trekking 1600 kilometres all over the United Kingdom with the prince. "He's so down to earth and very easy to get along with and he fitted right in with the group. He wanted to know about my family. My mum and dad are both former Marines and I told him my mum is a big fan of the royals and that she loved his mother Princess Diana. I also teased him that I've probably seen more baby photos of him than he has and he laughed about that." (, 02 Feb 2016;, 01 Nov 2015)

She has master's degrees in public administration, business administration and human behaviour. She is also studying a doctorate in education. (, 01 Jul 2018)

She runs Kristie Ennis Foundation which aims to support those organisations that are dedicated to improving life quality of individuals and families. (, 01 Jul 2018)

She has been engaged in several different activities after medically retired from the Marine corps in 2014. In 2016 she performed as a stuntwoman in the Patriots Day film about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. In 2017 she climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest peak in Africa, and Carstensz Pyramid, the highest mountain in Oceania, as well as a base camp trek at Mount Everest to collect logistics for a climbing attempt in 2019. In June 2017 she was featured in the cover of the Body Issue of ESPN Magazine. In 2018 she climbed Illiniza Norte and Cotopaxi volcanoes in Ecuador, and Denali [formerly known as Mount McKinley], the highest peak in North America. (, 01 Jul 2018)