Soldier event raises $10,000 for hometown hero

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The following was submitted by Kim Querry on KFOR.com on Tuesday, August 9th.

A soldier who lost three limbs while serving in Afghanistan is back home in Oklahoma and he’s getting a hero’s welcome.

The convoy came down I-35 on Saturday morning over 100 strong. The Lazy E Arena in Guthrie packed with people and vendors, and they were all there to support one man.

Rusty Dunagan.

Dunagan lost both legs and an arm to an IED while on patrol in Afghanistan last year. 40 surgeries later, he’s nearly ready to come back home.

“I’ll finish my rehab at the Center for the Intrepid at San Antonio, then I’ll move back home, move back to Oklahoma, ” said Dunagan.

However, Saturday was a form of communal healing.

“It’s bitter because he’s here because it happened. But it’s sweet because so many people have come out here to honor and to support him,” said Glenda Church, Rusty’s mom.

One of those people, Mark Dolfini, a former Marine who drove from Indiana to stand and collect donations.

“It’s all that you can do to give back to the guys that are doing it now. I know they would have done it for me when I was in, and I’m doing it now for them now that I’ve been out for a little bit,” said Dolfini.

“These injuries are real for these men and they need our support. They need our morale boost,” said Susan Porter, Rusty’s aunt.

Rusty says that with the support of his family, the recovery hasn’t been difficult at all and he doesn’t regret his time spent serving his country.

“I’d do it again, if I could,” said Dunagan.

When Rusty returns to Guthrie, he will live at home with his wife and kids.

During Saturday’s event, the family raised more than $10,000 to Rusty and other wounded warriors.

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