Excerpts from the MorrisHeraldnews.com:

More than 50 friends, along with the Minooka fire and police departments, filled Twin Rail Pub and to congratulate Sergio Lopez on Friday as he arrived in his new car – fully loaded 2016 Chevrolet Camaro SS –  which was given to him as a thank you for his selfless service to our country while enlisted in the Army and as a civilian who serves our country’s veterans.

As he roared into the parking lot with his fully loaded 2016 Chevrolet Camaro SS, pub owner Scott Breslar met his friend and patron outside to be the first to congratulate him on his new car.

In 2006, Lopez suffered a career-ending injury when he lost both of his legs below the knee from an improvised explosive device while he served his second tour in Iraq.

Since he has left the Army, Lopez has worked with organizations to help veterans in need. One organization in particular piqued his interest, and he has been a fundraiser for Associated Firefighters of Illinois [AFFI] Warrior Program, which began in 2012.

The program buys new vehicles for injured veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, said Tim O’Brien, chairman of AFFI Warrior Program.

Lopez, a regular customer at Twin Rail Pub in Minooka, asked manager Kristy Kromm if he could bring T-shirts and cards to sell at the pub to support the Warrior Program. More than $1,000 was raised, and the AFFI took notice.

On Friday, Lopez entered the filled pub and received handshakes of thanks from fellow veterans.

The car was bought at a great discount from, DeKalb-Sycamore Chevrolet and further funds were raised by DeKalb firefighters and David Hochberg of Perl Mortgage. They raised more than needed for the car, so the extra funds went toward home repairs for a disabled Marine.