DENVER -- Broken ribs, a fractured foot, and a traumatic brain injury. That's what an army soldier suffered in an IED blast that tossed him from the tank he was riding in.
But now, Sgt. Adam Cisneros is recovering, with the help of some friends and family right here in Colorado.
Sgt. Cisneros flew in to Denver International Airport late last month, greeted by a swam of family and flags, bikers and babies. The homecoming ceremony was organized by the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association. They wanted to honor a hero who, all things considered, seems pretty lucky to be coming home at all.
Cisneros went to Iraq three times, and Afghanistan once. And he has an injury for nearly every tour, and three Purple Hearts to show for them. His most serious wounds came last November, while riding in a Striker military vehicle in Afghanistan.
“His head was out the hatch, and they hit an IED. It blew him out the hatch, on the way out, it cracked his ribs, it also got a good part of his foot, they did save his foot, but he is going to limp around the rest of his days,” said Ray Easter, a member of the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association.
To show their appreciation for his sacrifice, relatives and friends turned up to welcome him home. So did a couple of Denver Broncos Cheerleaders. And some total strangers who showed up. People who believe soldiers like Adam are the epitome of selflessness and courage.
“The people that are out there serving mean that i get to sleep at night,” one woman told FOX31 Denver.
When Cisneros walked into the airport terminal, he was greeted with hugs and cheers.
“Sgt. Cisneros is not common among us. He has what it takes to get off the couch, turn off the TV, and become part of something bigger than himself,” Easter said.
So many are quick to use the word hero to describe Cisneros, but he's not so sure.
“I don't know, I don't see myself as a hero to be honest with you. I just did my job, got hurt a couple times doing it. You know people told me to keep my head down, obviously i didn't listen to them,” Cisneros joked.
But kidding aside, everyone is glad the sergeant made it home from war in one piece.
The Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association held a poker run in Adam's honor June 30, and raised $1,400 that will help pay for his recovery. The soldier’s trip back to Colorado was quick. He's already back at the veterans hospital in Georgia, continuing his rehabilitation.
To learn more about the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association, click here: http://combatvet.org/