Bill to Designate April 24th as Wounded Heroes Day in North Carolina Passes State House
Updated: Apr 1, 2021
Date Chosen in Honor of Union County's SGT Michael Verardo
Raleigh, NC – Yesterday, the state House unanimously approved legislation introduced by Representative David Willis (R-Union) to recognize April 24th each year as “Wounded Heroes Day” in North Carolina.
The date was chosen in honor of Union County’s Sgt. Michael Verardo who endured life changing injuries in Afghanistan on April 24, 2010. Sgt. Verardo, his wife Sarah, and Danica Thomas attended the House session and received a standing ovation after the bill passed 118-0.
“This bill will recognize heroes like Sgt. Verardo who were wounded serving our country,” said Rep. Willis. “By dedicating April 24th as ‘Wounded Heroes Day’ in North Carolina, we can acknowledge and honor these brave men and women who have sacrificed so much for our freedoms. I want to express my deepest appreciation to Sgt. Verardo and his wife, Sarah, for their service and sacrifice. They are a model of what our country and state represent.”
While on foot patrol as an Infantryman with the 82nd Airborne, Bravo Company (2-508th) Parachute Infantry Regiment, in Afghanistan, Sgt. Verardo was wounded by an improvised explosive device, causing him to lose his left leg and much of his left arm, withstand severe burns, and suffer a traumatic brain injury and other injuries that required a field blood transfusion.
Sgt. Verardo bravely endured years of physical, occupational, speech, and visual therapies and, on April 24, 2019, his Ninth Alive Day, underwent his 120th surgery; and because of his courage and grit, Sgt. Verardo has overcome unimaginable challenges and obstacles and is now able to enjoy adaptive athletics, such as competitive pistol shooting, and is an active participant in his church and community.