ST. PETERSBURG, Florida -- As Sgt. Mike Nicholson wheels his way onto Tropicana Field, he isn't thinking about his sacrifice. He isn't thinking about losing three of his limbs fighting for our country, or the months of excruciating recovery. This American hero is now home, and ready to throw out the first pitch at tonight's Rays/Yankees game.
The loud speaker trumpets his name. "Now taking the mound, Sgt. Mike Nicholson!"
With a standing ovation, the crowd cheers him on. He throws the first pitch, a dream for any baseball fan comes true.
Sgt. Nicholson's sacrifice will not go unrewarded. The Tunnels to Towers Foundation helps build customized "smart homes" for severely disabled vets, and one will be built for him.
"The people at the foundation, Tunnels to Towers Foundation, make you feel like family. It's really great. It's starting a new chapter in my life," said Nicholson.
His new chapter includes a fundraiser concert at Curtis Hixon Park on May 10th with CBS' Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band. The money raised will help build that custom "smart home."
"I just moved back from Walter Reed, so I'm back in Tampa for good now. Getting into a normal routine, just ready to start the fundraising," said Nicholson.
Despite what Sgt. Nicholson has endured, he hasn't lost his crazy sense of humor. Or his gratitude to the people of Tampa Bay.
"It means so much. It shows that people still care."