The Cornelius Family
In the spring of 2008, Sgt. 1st Class Class Aaron Cornelius was on his third tour in Iraq when shrapnel from a powerful blast IED blast hit him in the head, destroying the top of his skull and permanently blinding him. Cornelius was medically retired from the Army in 2010 after more than 20 years of service to his nation and was awarded the Bronze Star for his heroic service. His wife took over the household and the couple’s five daughters while he recovered from his injuries and adjusted to life without sight. Unfortunately, tragedy struck again during Cornelius’s transition back to civilian life in the quiet town of Bradenton, Fla., when his wife passed away unexpectedly in 2010. Now 48 years old, this American hero lives in a four-bedroom, three-bathroom home in Bradenton, about an hour south of Tampa. He found love again and is married to his second wife Melissa.