SPENCER (CBS) – Spencer held an emotional homecoming for an injured soldier.
Friends and family lined the streets as Sergeant Matthew Chalifoux was escorted into town by police and motorcyclists.
“It’s unbelievable. It’s been a long road. I left home a year ago. It’s good to be back,” said the 30-year-old National Guardsman
The more than 50 people, including Douglas Eddy from the local American Legion said it felt good to have him back, “we’ve been anticipating this for a while. It’s going to be great to have him home.”
WBZ-TV’s Diana Perez reports
Chalifoux was at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center for the last seven and half months. He broke his back and badly injured his right leg last November in Afghanistan when the vehicle he was driving was hit by an IED.
His father Raoul Chalifoux summed up what life has been like without Matt, “the last seven months have been hell.”
His mother Alison quit her job to be by his side as he recovered, “It’s what a mother does. If I were home I’d be worrying. There I could talk to the doctors and follow his progress.”
And Thursday more than 50 of his closest friends and family held up signs and flags along Main Street in Spencer as Chalifoux was escorted by police, fire trucks and motorcyclists, everyone anxious to welcome this brave soldier back home.
“People just want to welcome him home and just hug him,” an emotion Raoul explained.
Matthew still has a long journey to recovery. His parents say at least another year of physical therapy. He plans on taking the weekend on before returned to his daily rehabilitation routine.