Veteran savors new life and new home

Raleigh News & ObserverNovember 27, 2008 

This Thanksgiving, former Army Sgt. Joey Bozik and his wife, Jayme, wanted what anybody would want: a holiday meal with family. A turkey, some vegetables, a football game on television in their new home, a new baby on the way. Four years after his body was blown apart by a land mine in Iraq, Joey wanted his mom and his brothers to see that his life was coming together.

Hundreds turned out last month to watch a limousine bring the Boziks to the home where they will spend the holiday.

The 2,600-square-foot house built by a battalion of volunteers was being given, free, to honor Bozik's service. In a two-hour ceremony, the 82nd Airborne Band played; the Airborne Chorus sang the national anthem. A trio of Black Hawk helicopters flew in.

When the speeches were done, Joey walked stiffly on two prosthetic legs to the center of the gathering and took his wife's arm for balance. An Army parachute team floated from the blue sky, and one of the paratroopers handed the grateful couple the key to their new place.

Since Joey got hurt in a mine explosion in Iraq, nothing, it seems, has been simple.

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