WASHINGTON, DC. - A Cape Coral soldier is on the road to recovery.
Private First Class Corey Kent is making incredible progress after being injured in an explosion in Afghanistan last July. For the first time, he's talking about what happened.
Since the explosion, Private Kent has spent much of his recovery at Walter Reed Army hospital in Washington. That's where he spoke with reporter Janine Zeitlin and photographer Amanda Inscore from the News-Press on Tuesday.
"I remember everything, flying through the air, lying there with your eyes closed," Kent told the News-Press, vividly recalling the moment he stepped on an improved explosive device while on duty in Afghanistan.
"I heard the medics working, and they're loading me up on the stretcher, and running me out to the helicopter."
The then-21 year old Mariner High graduate had lost both of his legs, and the fingers on one hand.
"I kept my eyes closed, because part of me didn't want to know. It was just like hope, hope that it wasn't that bad, but I think I kind of knew."
It has been a long road to recovery. Kent received the purple heart from President Obama in August. He then moved to a Tampa hospital in October to be closer to family; but poor conditions at the VA Hospital prompted complaints which WINK News took to Senator Bill Nelson.
After it all, Corey remains proud to have served his country.
"I think I regret what happened, but I don't regret joining," Kent said.
Now, Private Kent works to regain his strength and use artificial limbs to walk again, hoping to see his fellow soldiers this summer.
"I just focus on what I'm doing on a day-to-day basis, trying to keep all that straight and heal up as fast as I can so I can see my unit when they come back."
You can read more of Corey's interview in Wednesday's News-Press.