LUBBOCK, Texas — On Monday afternoon, a Lubbock disabled veteran received a gift that will allow him to regain strength in his legs, improve his coordination and most importantly be able to socialize outdoors again with friends and family.

Veteran Ronald Hixson, 79, received an Amtryke from the Lubbock Monterey AMBUCS Chapter at the McKenzie/Merket Alumni Center at Texas Tech University.

Hixson is a decorated veteran who was diagnosed with cancer and also suffers arthritis and macular degeneration, according to a press release. He has had several knee replacements.

“He [Hixson] couldn’t stop smiling,” said Lisa Dolezal with Lubbock Monterey AMBUCS. “He was hoping to get a ride in today before the rain comes.”

Rhett Ronhovde, a Physical Therapist at the Lubbock VA, made the referral to the Lubbock Monterey AMBUCS, the press release said. The VFW Post #2466 sponsored the Amtryke and helped celebrate Hixson’s gained mobility over lunch.