Cory Hixon is a veteran of the second Iraq War and a Purple Heart recipient. He is also a husband and a father. Earlier this month, Hixon went missing, and the community of Broomfield, Colorado came out in support of his wife, Shala, to help bring him home.
Happily, Hixon returned home a few days later, but his story remained a mystery. That is, until Shala took to Facebook to share her troubled husband’s story and shine a much-needed light on the struggles facing returning veterans.
Though Hixon sounds like a perfectly normal family man and proud veteran, the truth is much more heartbreaking. He suffers from traumatic brain injury and memory loss, which has led to him getting in trouble with law enforcement.
When Hixon finally returned home, it wasn’t because Shala managed to find him. It was because he was arrested by police for entering a stranger’s garage and stealing some of his stuff.
Though his wife describes him as an “active outgoing person” and “the best guy you can know,” a witness who spotted Hixon and approached him after calling police said that the troubled vet said that he was cold and hungry and had nowhere to go.
Though the cops were already en route, the witness took pity on Hixon and let him wait inside his house to warm up.
As the two talked, the witness decided to tell Hixon that police were coming, and encouraged him to run so he wouldn’t get intro trouble. Hixon stayed, and complied with police. He was described as remorseful and apologetic as he was taken into custody.
This arrest was what finally alerted his family to his whereabouts and led directly to Hixson’s reunion with his wife and children. Unfortunately, his troubles did not end with the police.
As Hixon recovered in the hospital, his wife shared an emotional Facebook post directed at Senator Cory Gardner, pleading with him to take action to help returning vets. Hixon has long struggled to get the help he needs from his VA hospital, and he blames them for his condition.
I am overwhelmed as I sit here in the hospital watching my husband frail and lost. Skin and bones at 140 when he usually weighs 185. All those who know him know, he is usually an active outgoing person the best guy you can know. He served our country with honor and pride TWO tours to be exact!!
He lost an eye for you, for me, our nation and although he has a Purple Heart he lays here waiting for a transfer somewhere as he has been denied a bed at the VA ‘because they don’t have a bed’. I am numb watching the VA do this to him and our family again. He has scrapes and bruises to no end. After what he endured this weekend and a felony charge pending where is our help!
My heart breaks for him. I am embarrassed for my family that his and our personal lives have been on display but not as much as I am embarrassed of the system that ‘takes care’ of our veterans! We need your PERSONAL HELP in person! You’ve met my husband at the Grand Junction VA and promised him if he ever needed help you’d always remember him as he was a Cory too! My family will accept no less!”
The Hixsons have since gotten in contact with both Senator Gardner and the Wounded Warrior Project. Gardner and the District Attorney’s office have begun to provide some assistance with Hixson’s legal troubles. While he is not currently incarcerated, it remains to be seen if he will be charged. He will likely know by the end of the month.
Shala Hixson continues to provide regular updates about Cory on her Facebook page. She has also been sharing resources so that others can family members of friends who ar veterans.