Joshua Casillas (center, on crutches) comes back to school Monday, Oct. 23 with a lift from LA County firefighters.

Joshua Casillas returned to class at Montague Charter Academy in Pacoima on Monday to a rousing welcome from his fellow students and teachers who were truly happy to see him.

Casillas, 8, had been seriously injured in May when he and his grandfather were struck by a hit-and-run driver as they were walking home from school. Casillas required multiple surgeries during the summer, including the amputation of his left leg.

Nonetheless the youth was all smiles as he has helped off the fire truck he rode to school in, and walked onto campus with the aid of crutches.

His mother Sandra Lemus told reporters that Casillas did not want to be home-schooled as he continues his recovery.

“I want to be with my friends. I love my school,” Lemus said her son told her.

She also expressed being grateful at the outpouring of support from the Pacoima community during this difficult time.

“They care about us and Joshua feels he’s being cared for by other people that prayed for him and that makes him stronger,” Lemus told reporters.