Cpl. Billmyer's family reacts to address - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cpl. Billmyer's family reacts to address

Cheryl Billmyer, mother of Cpl. Christopher Billmyer, watches President Obama's address Wednesday evening Cheryl Billmyer, mother of Cpl. Christopher Billmyer, watches President Obama's address Wednesday evening

One Eastern Iowa family affected by President Obama's Wednesday night speech is the Billmyers. In October, their son Christopher Billmyer, a Marine Lance Corporal at the time, lost his legs after an IED struck him.

While receiving treatment at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. in February, the Billmyers got to meet President Obama.

Tuesday night, family members heard from that very man that, "We will be able to remove 10,000 troops from Afghanistan by the end of this year," Obama said in his address.

Christopher Billmyer and his father Jim were at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington D.C. Wednesday night, but their mother and wife, respectively, Cheryl Billmyer gathered with other family members at her sister's house.

"It's nice to be back, even though it's for a short period of time," she said, "but I miss being with Christopher, also, when I'm here."

The family was celebrating Cheryl Billmyer's rare week in Dubuque. They also watched President Obama's address.

"Thousands more have been wounded. Some have lost limbs on the battlefield," Obama said, as a tear rolled down Cheryl Billmyer's cheek. "We draw inspiration from our fellow Americans, who have sacrificed so much on our behalf."

Billmyer hopes more sacrifices won't come from her family.

"I'm hoping that, with them bringing the guys back, that our other son won't have to go. That's a big concern, also," she said.

The Billmyers' son Joseph is in the army.

Cheryl Billmyer said her injured son Cpl. Christopher Billmyer is torn on the issue of troop withdrawal.

"He would like for all the guys to come back safe and sound, but yet he doesn't want to leave until the job is done," she said.

For her, it all comes down to one hope: "That we can bring them all back safely and soon," Cheryl Billmyer said.

It's a hope felt by military families throughout the nation.

The Billmyers say their son has three more surgeries to undergo before he gets a several-month break, during which he hopes to return home to Dubuque to celebrate his August birthday.

After that, they say, he faces as little as one more surgery and he may come home for good.

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