Visalia resident and U.S. Army 1st Sgt. Norberto “Norbie” Lara, addressed the Kiwanis Club of La Cañada at its Dec. 21 meeting.
Lara was in the service for more than 11 years, retiring after a roadside bomb severed his arm in June 2004. He represented the Army at the State of the Union address in 2005 and sat with First Lady Laura Bush in the Congressional Gallery as a guest of President George W. Bush. He was awarded Veteran of the Year for both the 38th California Assembly District and by the Visalia Veteran’s Committee. He received the Purple Heart and Bronze Star for his heroism under fire.
He now works on behalf of the Wounded Warriors, a group of wounded warriors and caregivers who have been selected, like Sgt. Lara, to share their inspirational stories of courage, perseverance, and personal triumphs with the public while gaining self-confidence and career development skills.