Craig native, Iraq war veteran found after being missing from Broomfield home for 2 days | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig native, Iraq war veteran found after being missing from Broomfield home for 2 days

Lauren Blair

Craig native and disabled Iraq war veteran Cory Hixson was found safe Monday after disappearing from his Broomfield home Saturday evening without a coat or shoes. He was found by Weld County Sheriff's deputies after allegedly stealing a sweater and knit hat from a garage in rural Erie

— Iraq War veteran and Craig native Cory Hixson was reunited with his family Tuesday after an ordeal that began with his disappearance from his Broomfield home Saturday night.

A Purple Heart recipient and disabled veteran with a traumatic brain injury, Hixson struggles with memory loss and has difficulty navigating, according to information posted by Broomfield Police Department.

His wife, Shala Hixson, said he jumped from his second-floor balcony Saturday wearing neither coat nor shoes and disappeared, according to a CBS4 Denver report. The Broomfield Police Department launched a search Sunday evening.

The Boulder County Parks and Open Space K-9 Unit assisted in the search.

Shala Hixson could not be reached Tuesday by the Craig Daily Press.

The search ended Monday afternoon, when the Weld County Sheriff's Office took Hixson into custody, not knowing, at first, that he was the missing veteran from Broomfield who had been widely publicized through media and social media outlets.

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"At the time he was contacted by our deputies, all they could get from him was a first name," said Corporal Matt Turner, with the sheriff's office.

Hixson was arrested Monday on a charge of second-degree burglary for reportedly entering the garage of an elderly woman in rural Erie, Colorado, and taking a red stocking cap, a blue sweater and a container of Cool Whip. Witnesses reported he was not wearing shoes at the time.

Hixson went before a judge and was released from the Weld County Jail Tuesday afternoon.

"He's been switched medication several times, and it always messes with him," Shala Hixson told CBS4. "He started acting different and shaved his head, didn't know who we were or who he was… just disoriented."

Shala Hixson also reported that the family moved from Craig to Broomfield in order to be closer to the Veterans Affairs Hospital and get better health care, but feels dissatisfied with the level of care he's getting.

He was injured serving in the United States Marine Corps in Fallujah in 2004, where he was struck with shrapnel and knocked unconscious by a mortar round, resulting in the loss of his left eye.

Hixson's mother, Linda Nichols, who still lives in Craig, is also worried about her son.

"My boy is crying for help … I know when he came back … he was a different man," Nichols said. "Yesterday was a very scary situation."

Contact Lauren Blair at 970-875-1795 or lblair@CraigDailyPress.com or follow her on Twitter @LaurenBNews.