<b>By Dan Heyman<\/b>\r\n\r\nShe lost a leg in Baghdad but went on to be a world champion athlete, and now Melissa Stockwell is coming to West Virginia this week. She\u2019ll talk about how she went \u201cfrom Baghdad to Beijing,\u201d as she puts it. A young military officer when she was injured by an IED, Stockwell was the first American woman soldier to lose a limb in combat. In spite of that, she went on to win the paratriathlon world championship three times.\r\n\r\nShe says she has a fairly simple message for people here who might benefit from it. \u201cVeterans and anyone with a disability: there are so many opportunities,\u201d she declared. \u201cTry something that you don\u2019t think that you can do, and you\u2019ll be surprised. Try to focus on the good instead of the bad, what you have instead of what you don\u2019t have.\u201d\r\n\r\nStockwell will deliver the keynote address at the Spring Conference of the National Association of Social Workers, West Virginia Chapter. That\u2019s the largest conference of its kind in the country.\r\n\r\nStockwell says she was always an athlete, and when she was young she dreamt of going to the Olympics. She says one key part of her later success was that after her injury she didn\u2019t dwell on what she\u2019d lost.\r\n\r\n\u201cI chose to accept the loss of my leg within days after I lost it,\u201d she stated. \u201cToo many people sit there and \u2018what if?\u2019 The fact is you can\u2019t change what happened. I was happy with me and not somebody else, and I really knew from pretty early on that things were going to be OK.\u201d\r\n\r\nFor her fellow vets, Stockwell recommends looking to the future, even if the past has been rough. \u201cWest Virginia, I guarantee, has veterans\u2019 groups, support groups. And to reach out to know that you are not alone that there are other people out there going through the same things that you are\u201d is essential, she said.\r\n\r\nStockwell\u2019s speech was given Apr. 30, in the South Hall of the Charleston Civic Center.