Navy officer Greg Para promised himself that if made it back from Afghanistan, he would devote his life to helping veterans.
The Sarasota Democrat, who returned stateside last year, is making good on that commitment by challenging Republican Rep. Ray Pilon for District 72 in the Florida Legislature in 2014.
“I know what it means to work hard, and I know what it means to experience hardship,” Para told Jeremy Wallace of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
The Herald-Tribune reports Para announced he would run for the seat, which covers a large part of Sarasota County north of Osprey.
Para has his work cut out for him against the two-term Pilon, who won re-election in the Republican-leaning region with nearly 54 percent of the vote. Democrat Liz Alpert lost to Pilon in 2012 with 46 percent.