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Minn. Town Honors Soldier Seriously Injured In Afghanistan

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(credit: CBS) Liz Collin
At 15 years old, Liz Collin made her broadcast debut covering...
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By Liz Collin, WCCO-TV

CLEVELAND, Minn. (WCCO)
— A small Minnesota town honored a hometown soldier on Friday night facing a long battle ahead.

Just days ago, Private First Class Jack Zimmerman from Cleveland, Minn. walked over an improvised explosive device in southern Afghanistan. He lost both of his legs. Another soldier walking with him was hit with some shrapnel, but is OK.

Jack’s father, Mark Zimmerman will never forget that call that came on Wednesday.

“He told me right away he lost both of his legs and there was severe trauma to his right arm,” Mark said.

“When you have kids in the military you always hope you don’t get the call but every day it’s on your mind,” Jack’s mother, Lori, said.

Jack joined the army two years ago. His younger brother, A.J., signed up last year.

“He’s still my brother. He’s going to be all right. One day we will wrestle again,” A.J. said.

There are about 650 people that live in Jack’s hometown of Cleveland. At least half of them turned out Friday to honor him and show his family they care by walking to their house holding candles.

Nancy Manser organized the event.

“It’s the right thing to do. He did the right thing for us now it’s our turn,” Manser said.

Jack remains in a medically induced coma in Germany. In the next few days, he could be flown to Walter Reed or San Antonio, Texas to recover.

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