ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A Santa Fe native and decorated military veteran who was awarded the nation’s highest military honor for his bravery in Afghanistan was honored again Thursday in a special ceremony.
In 2008 while serving as an Army Ranger in Afghanistan fighting the Taliban, Leroy Petry showed his incredible bravery. Petry lost his right hand while throwing an enemy grenade away from his fellow soldiers.
Petry was surrounded by fellow veterans and grateful civilians who gave him a special gift that will help him connect with other veterans for the rest of his life.
That gratitude was expressed Thursday with a special gift. Petry received a modified Harley, specifically designed to accommodate his hand and a one-of-a-kind license plate to let everyone know who is behind the wheel.
Bill “Rocket” Rager, the event organizer said, “For veterans, I think it lets them know that there are guys who recognize their efforts and we appreciate them more than they can ever know”.
“I had no idea this was getting started. This is a surprise to me,” Petry said. “I will always know where it came from and that’s what makes it so special. When I’m enjoying myself I know that there’s people that had love for not only me, but what I represent.”
Petry plans to ride the bike with other veterans during next year’s “Run for the Wall” to honor prisoners of war and those missing in action.