By Todd R. Hansen
Things have not always gone the way Melissa Spencer would have preferred.
She lives with the daily pain of a degenerative spinal disease that forced her to abandon her dream of being a U.S. Army Ranger, and her family life has not always been the best either.
“My mom has had a lot of mental health issues and addiction problems,” said Spencer, adding her mother has not been a big part of her life.
She said her father Stephen Spencer’s second marriage added its own kinds of pressures, and at 13, she moved in with her brother, Mark. Spencer has three brothers and one half-brother.