NEW YORK (PIX11) — An 80-year-old Army veteran from Long Island has a lot to be thankful for this Thanksgiving; he had life-saving surgery on Veterans Day at Stony Brook Medicine.

Joseph Annunziata suffered from a left hemisphere stroke. He needed an emergency procedure. There were immediate improvements in his condition after surgery.

“I’m lucky. Through the grace of god, I thank everybody from the doctors and nurses, and how they are treating me,” he said. “They are wonderful. I thank them from my heart and soul for what they do for me and for the veterans. Without them we’d be lost.”

PIX11’s Arrianee LeBeau has more on Annunziata’s condition and his medical care in the video above.