Family, community pull together to support local injured soldier



CHERRYVILLE, N.C. - A Cherryville soldier was shot while serving in Afghanistan.

James Justice went to Cherryville High School, and now, his family and community are pulling together to support him any way they can.

Eyewitness News was with James Justice’s mother-in-law in Grover as she got the latest news from overseas on his condition.

“He is like a son to me,” Melba Carroll said. “He's got to come back to us.  He's just got to come back to us.”

Just one month into his tour of duty, Justice was shot in the neck during a mission in Afghanistan.

Carroll read the last message they exchanged on Facebook last week.

“He said, ‘I love you all and miss you all. I see you soon though,’” Carroll said.

Now, she wonders if she will see him again.

On Wednesday morning, the Army moved the 21-year-old to a hospital in Germany. Family members said part of his brain was removed in surgery.

His wife and three stepdaughters are by his side.

Justice's stepsister in Cherryville saw him via Skype in the hospital bed on Wednesday morning.

“It's really not good at all,” Lisa Bolton said.

She said he joined the Army because he wanted to help people.

“He lived and breathed the Army. The Army and his family -- that's all he was about,” Bolton said.

Now his family is trying to help him.

They organized prayer chains online. Janet White started the first one.

“I was in tears too, so I went in my bedroom and I got on my knees and prayed,” White said.

Then she called others, and messages have been pouring in over the Internet.

“Praying all is well,” Carroll said.  “Only God can bring him through.”

Justice's parents are going to Germany Thursday to be by his side.  The government is helping them quickly get their visas.  They will also pay for the flight and their hotel.