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Thomas University to honor veterans on Nov. 11

MikeMorabitoThomas University will recognize veterans with a special ceremony slated for 8:30 a.m. Monday, Nov. 11, in the Flowers Foods Executive Classroom inside Smith-Bonvillian Hall. The event will focus on the sacrifices that veterans and their family members make in serving their country.

The keynote speaker for the event will be Mike Morabito and his wife, Karen. After graduating from Thomas University in 2002 and a stint in minor league baseball, Morabito enlisted into the U.S. in March 2003.

After basic training at Ft. Benning, GA, Mike was stationed at Camp Casey, South Korea, and went on to serve in the Middle East.

During a routine humanitarian mission geared toward compensating locals for damage to their homes and personal property, Morabito and 18 other soldiers were attacked by a vehicle borne improvised explosive device (car bomb). Despite sustaining burn injuries and damage to his spinal cord, Morabito managed to pull several of his compatriots from the burning wreckage. For his bravery and heroic actions, Morabito was awarded the Army Commendation Medal with Valor. 

Over the two-and-a-half year period that Morabito was in rehabilitation, he took on the responsibility of supervising the everyday care of 65 wounded warriors. He instructed and trained all Brooke Army Medical Center hospital staff being deployed into Iraq on their marksmanship and assisted with training at the Captains Casualty Career Course at Camp Bullis in San Antonio, Texas.

Morabito was medically retired from the Army in March 2008. Since retirement, Morabito has stayed very active in the military community by assisting other wounded veterans through the complicated process of their medical evaluation board and making sure they have a seamless transition into the Department of Veterans Affairs.

As Morabito returned from war, he married Karen, a 2003 TU graduate and a member of the 2003 TU National Championship Softball Team. Together Mike and Karen Morabito will share their story as part of the TU Veterans Day Ceremony on Nov. 11. A reception will immediately follow the event. 

For more information about the event, contact Jen Lindquist at jlindquist@thomasu.edu.

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