BETHESDA, Md. - An injured Lafayette marine, 23-year-old Marine Cpl. Matt Bowman, will receive the Purple Heart Thursday.
Bowman's father Ken Bowman said his son will be getting the Purple Heart Thursday from the Commandant of the Marine Corps. It will take place at the National Naval Medical Center in Maryland where Matt Bowman has been receiving treatment.
Last month, Matt Bowman was injured by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.
Matt Bowman had surgery on his left hand Wednesday morning, which his father said is the major concern now because there is a big open wound.
Matt Bowman has had at least eight surgeries since being injured in Afghanistan a little more than two weeks ago.
"I lost some fingers on my left hand. Then, I lost both legs just above the knee down," Bowman explained via Skype Wednesday morning from his bed at the National Naval Medical Center in Maryland. "I'll get prosthetic legs, so I should be able to run and wrestle and everything else like that again."
"He's missing a couple of bones on the back side of his hand. It's pretty open," added Matt's father Ken Bowman. "You can't tell now because it is wrapped up right now. He did lose two fingers. They will be able to repair it and reconstruct it."
Matt Bowman doesn't remember much after a roadside bomb exploded February 28th.
"We were on patrol. We ran into an IED. I was the one that got hit by it," Matt Bowman recalled. "I just remember waking up in the hospital here with Paige standing over me."
Matt Bowman's wife Paige, their two sons, his parents, siblings, and many other family members flew to the National Naval Medical Center in Maryland to see Matt once he arrived back in the States a little more than a week ago. It was an emotional reunion.
"He started crying. So did we," Ken Bowman said.
Matt Bowman's favorite football team, the Green Bay Packers, heard what happened and sent him a care package.
"A letter signed by Aaron Rodgers with a bunch of blankets, towels, stuff like that. I got an autographed football from the whole team," he said.
All the support from his hometown has been overwhelming.
"Thank everybody back home for all the support I'm getting, especially First Christian Church and Reverend Greg Eberhard for all the support I've been getting through him," Matt Bowman said.
Ken Bowman said Matt will remain at this hospital for at least another two to three weeks, then he will transfer to the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C. for physical therapy.
Matt Bowman was flown from Germany to the Naval Medical Center a little more than a week ago. His wife, two sons, parents, sisters, and many other family members were at the hospital when he arrived. Many are still there with him.
To keep tabs on Bowman's progress, you can visit his CaringBridge page .
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