'Operation Welcome You Home' honors New Lenox Air Force veteran with caravan fit for a hero

NEW LENOX, Ill. (WLS) -- An Air Force veteran was honored with a big caravan surprise Saturday in New Lenox.

It was a show of appreciation for a lifetime of service to his country -- an honor fit for a military hero.

Josue Cordova was recognized for his service and his work with Paralyzed Veterans of America.

It was a tribute he said he doesn't deserve.

Cordova was paralyzed when he was pulled over to help a disabled vehicle and another vehicle crashed into him and two others.

"I felt lost and broken but I'm grateful to my brother and sister veterans who were there at Hines to the Paralyzed Veterans of America, to my family and loved ones," he said.

Cordova said working with Paralyzed Veterans of America is his way of continuing to serve his country, adding that he is just following the example set by his grandfather, who was a World War II vet.

"At 17 years old with my father's signature, I was able to join the service," he said.

The organization called "Operation Welcome You Home" presented Cordova with adaptations for his wheelchair and snow plow attatchment, as well as hunting and fishing gear.

"There are not enough words to express my emotions and what this means to all of us," said Donna Morsoville with Operation Welcome You Home. "Just to be able to see the tears of joy on their face and to let them know that we have their back."

Cordova said he's happy to continue to serve his country even though it's in a different capacity.
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