POMONA (CBSLA.com) — Cory Remsberg, the wounded veteran mentioned by President Obama during his State of the Union address, returned to Pomona Sunday to say thanks at the rehab facility where he spent 16 months recovering from his extensive war injuries.
Remsberg, you might recall, got the longest standing ovation during the State of the Union.
The wounded soldier told CBS2’s Greg Mills that he was honored to be the face for the many men and women who fought overseas.
“And the applause started,” said Cory’s father, Craig. “It took my breath away. It just kept going.”
While visiting the Casa Colina Center For Rehabilitation in Pomona Sunday (he started there in January 2012) , Remsberg was all smiles and laughs.
He asked one attendant if she wanted to do the tango.
Mills reports that it’s a miracle Remsberg is talking, let alone walking or joking.
He credits Casa Colina with putting him well back on the road to recovery.
“They always found a way to make things interesting, and more difficult which I like,” said Remsberg.
“His goal was to communicate independently, to walk,” said Dr. David Patterson of Casa Colina. “And those goals were, hopefully, met by the time he left.”
He left in spectacular fashion, too — a motorcycle escort home to Gilbert, Arizona.
Remsberg was in Afghanistan for his 10th deployment when an IED blast changed his life forever.
He was left in a coma, with collapsed lungs, blind in his right eye, his left arm paralyzed, his vocal cords were damaged. He also suffered a traumatic brain injury.
Therapy was grueling and intense — six hours a day, five days a week.
“At the end of the day,” Remsberg says, “I knew it would be worth it.”
After being discharged from the Army later this year, Remsberg said he wants to go to college.
He also told Mills he had his sights on getting married and having a family.
Remsberg’s birthday is Wednesday. He said he planned to mark the occasion by going skydiving.