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SSG Adam Palmer visits Tryon United Methodist Church

A joyful congregation watched on the first Sunday in Advent as one of their own made a surprise appearance at the Hanging of the Greens services at Tryon United Methodist Church.

At this traditional service in which the congregation decorates the sanctuary for the Advent season, children process to the altar carrying nativity figures and a crche for the baby Jesus.

This year, however, the final gift was presented by SSG Adam Palmer who, accompanied by his wife Ellenie and their baby daughter Mya, walked down the aisle cradling the symbolic baby Jesus in his arms.

Adam was serving his third tour of combat duty in Iraq when a roadside bomb exploded on July 14, 2009, wounding him severely and causing heavy damage to his Army armored vehicle.

In the succeeding months, he underwent 12 surgeries in Iraq, Germany and at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC. to repair injuries to his legs, arms and the front and back of his body. He was awarded the Purple Heart Medal.

Five months later, Adam placed the Baby Jesus in the manger and then stood at the lectern with his family to address the assembled congregation.

He thanked everyone present for their prayers, cards and letters of support, noting that he felt the prayers of the entire community throughout his recovery.

With heart-felt emotion, Adam also expressed his thanks for everyones generosity to the Church-established Adam Palmer Fund, which by mid-December had totaled $5,457.

Adam and his family returned to Walter Reed briefly before being transferred to Ft. Bliss, where he will return to service and continue to receive treatment for his injuries. The familys new address is:

SSG Palmer, Everette A., 4355-B Brosius Cir., El Paso, Texas 79904