A veteran confined to an old wheelchair, braces and crutches now has increased maneuverability and ease in going places thanks to the efforts of a longtime Madera family and the local Breakfast Lions Club.
Jesus Sosa, now 60, is a veteran of 30 years of service to his country as an infantryman and member of the 82nd Airborne Division of the U.S. Army. In 1996, Sosa suffered severe neck and back injuries in a vehicle accident at Camp Roberts while instructing National Guard troops. He was discharged from the Army in 1998. He sought employment to no avail. “It seems no one will hire me because of the liability I present,” said Sosa.
Since his wife was killed by a drunk driver in 2003, he has lived with his mother, Paula Smith.
The Lakeman family was in possession of a little-used electric wheelchair and wanted to see it put to good use. Through Breakfast Lions members Jim Long and Bill Jones, they contacted Terry Lopez of the Veterans Administration. Lopez gave them Sosa’s name...