Local News

Injured soldier gets hero's welcome in Johnston County

Posted July 30, 2010 5:53 p.m. EDT
Updated July 30, 2010 9:31 p.m. EDT

— A soldier who was badly injured in Afghanistan got a hero's welcome at his girlfriend’s house in Johnston County Friday.

After spending months in a Florida hospital, Staff Sgt. Cory Remsburg was granted special leave to visit his girlfriend, Amber Woods, who lives in Princeton. It was also a chance for him to see first-hand how many people care about him and the sacrifices he made while serving.

"We think we have a miracle sitting right here with us," said Remsburg's father, Craig Remsburg.

The 27-year-old was injured in October when an improvised explosive device went off, causing severe injuries to his head and eye. About an hour after the explosion, his father says he got a cell phone call from the battlefield.

“So I immediately said, ‘Hey Cory, how you doing?’” Craig Remsburg recalled. “And when there was silence on the phone and the major identified himself as his company commander, that’s when the stomach dropped.”

Remsburg has been on a long journey – both on the road to recovery and to get to North Carolina. He was recovering at a hospital in Tampa, and was driven to Princeton with an escort of about 100 members of the Patriot Guard Riders on their motorcycles.

"What we do is honor our troops," said Tom Meece, with Patriot Guard Riders. "Seeing his smile, that made everything worth it, just seeing his smile."

"It's an honor," Remsburg said.

Woods has called Remsburg her boyfriend for the past two years and had a twinkle in her eye as she looked at him Friday.

"He's so much better, and I think it will only get better from here," she said.

Remsburg has had six surgeries so far and has gone through months of rehabilitation, learning how to walk and talk again. After his visit in Princeton, he will go to Maryland for his seventh surgery.