IMPACT OF ACCESSIBLE homes FOR injured veterans
Please take some time to review our 2017 Annual Impact Report to see what we’ve been able to accomplish because of our donors’ generosity. This report is not just a recap of what
Homes For Our Troops has accomplished over the past year; it demonstrates the power of the great things that can happen when we work together toward one common goal. The support we receive from donors and sponsors has enabled us to acquire land, build homes, and help rebuild lives. The impact of our accessible homes for injured veterans cannot be overstated. Our accessible homes are making lifelong differences for our injured Veterans and their families.
Once our Veterans move into their safe and fully accessible homes, you see hopes and dreams once again become a part of their lives. They are able to attend school, obtain jobs, expand families, launch businesses, compete athletically, and even climb mountains. Their caregivers are under much less stress and able to accomplish life goals as well.
Your continued support in FY18 and FY19 will be crucial in light of the predicted spikes in operating costs due to environmental factors such as floods, wildfires, and hurricanes, and the rising cost of building materials and scarcity of quality contractors. More importantly though, your support today enables us to help change these home recipients’ lives and outcomes – forever.
Testimonials from our 2017 Veterans
“The home has brought a sense of security and comfort in my daily life.”
~ Marine PFC Isaac Blunt
Marine Private First Class Isaac Blunt joined the Marines shortly after high school and started his first deployment to Afghanistan in March 2011. On June 13 of that year, PFC Blunt, a rifleman with the 1st Battalion, 5th Marines, was on foot patrol in Sangin, Afghanistan, when he stepped on a pressure plate improvised explosive device (IED). The blast resulted in the loss of both his legs, his left eye, and several fingers on his left hand.
Now medically retired, Isaac plays wheelchair basketball on Balboa Medical Center’s team, Wolf Pack. He also trains to stay in shape for mountain climbing.
He received his HFOT home in Fallbrook, CA on July 15, 2017. Click here to read his full story.
“We knew our lives would change for the better once we moved into our home. We could never have anticipated how much less stressful our day to day lives are. Homes For Our Troops gave us much more than a home; they have given us a chance to move forward with our lives.”
~ Army SGT Juan “Carlos” Vasquez
On Aug. 26, 2013, Army Sergeant Juan Carlos Vasquez, a combat engineer, was on his third combat tour. He was on a route clearance mission in Hasan Karez, Afghanistan, with Charlie Company, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, when the vehicle he was riding in drove over an improvised explosive device (IED). The blast resulted in the loss of his right leg.
Opting for the comfort of his wheelchair instead of wearing his prosthetic at home, Carlos faced obstacles in his previous living space. His home was not adapted, which made everyday activities like cooking and showering nearly impossible. With a new home from Homes For Our Troops, Carlos has wider doorways, lowered counters in the kitchen and an accessible bathroom, making these tasks and daily routines much easier. Living mortgage-free also allows him to focus on his college degree, and enables him to live worry free with his wife Lisa and their two children.
He received his home in New Braunfels, TX on June 9, 2017. Click here to read his full story.
“Being in our forever home has given my family security knowing that we are finally home and can begin to start rebuilding our new lives.”
~ Air Force TSgt Daniel Fye
During his third combat tour on May 27, 2011, Air Force Tech Sergeant Daniel Fye, an Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) Team Leader with the 466 Bravo EOD Flight, was severely injured in an improvised explosive device (IED) explosion during a route clearance mission in Mushan, Afghanistan. The blast resulted in the loss of his left leg and severe damage to his right.
These days Dan can be found in the garage working on cars, in the gym lifting weights or at home spending time and traveling with his four children and wife Nicole. While he may lead an active lifestyle, there are several challenges he faced in his previous home. His Homes For Our Troops home with an accessible bathroom, he says, makes daily life more comfortable and “less of a chore.” Having the financial burden of a mortgage eliminated, he says, opens up many doors for him and his family.
He received his HFOT home in Bremerton, WA on September 23, 2017. Click here to read his full story.
“I am thankful to be able to have family over and a place to do it. We are truly blessed to have received the home. I cannot thank HFOT’s donors enough.”
~ Army MSG Eric Marts
Two improvised explosive device (IED) blasts during Army MSG Eric Marts’ 2006 deployment serving with the 2-136 Combined Arms Battalion, 34th Infantry Division in Fallujah, Iraq took his vision. Shortly after the first blast, he started losing vision in one of his eyes. He continued to serve, but after being in another blast, the condition worsened. The traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused swelling in his optic nerves, resulting in him going blind in both eyes. He has also undergone surgeries for neck and shoulder injuries and experiences balance issues.
Eric and Bobbie are happy to be living in a specially adapted custom Homes For Our Troops home where Eric has enough room for Deacon to guide Eric around and a security system is in place, making it safe for Eric to be home alone. Most importantly, they now have enough room to host their five grown children and grandchildren over for holidays and cookouts.
He received his home in Moorhead, MN on August 19, 2017. Click here to read his full story.
rebuilding lives: Then & Now: HFOT Veteran Home Recipient Samuel Shockley
THEN: On March 17, 2013, Army Staff Sergeant Samuel Shockley was on a route clearance mission with the 38th Engineer Company in Panjwai, Afghanistan, when he triggered an improvised explosive device (IED). The blast resulted in the loss of his legs above the knee, the amputation of several fingers, and severe damage to his right arm. In Sam’s previous home, simple daily tasks – like making a meal – were a challenge. He could not reach the shelves and cabinets in his wheelchair. His wife, Emely, was afraid to leave him home alone for fear he would hurt himself. The limited space in their home also prevented Sam and Emely from having guests over.
NOW: Sam’s specially adapted custom home in Washington has been life-changing. Ever since receiving the keys in September 2016, daily tasks have been much easier for him. He now has no trouble preparing his favorite dish, spaghetti and meatballs, thanks to the roll under sinks and lower countertops in his accessible kitchen. “The ability to transfer hot boiling water from the stove to the sink is now a safer and more efficient task,” he says. Sam and Emely have plenty of space to host family and friends. They celebrated Thanksgiving in their home for the first time this year. “I was excited to finally be able to host the holiday, which provided enough room to fit everyone in the home,” he says. “The home provided a wonderful experience and gratefulness to have everyone under one roof.” The freedom Sam regained from the home gives him the motivation and energy to pursue his goals. He is in college fulltime working toward a degree in business management, and hopes to get his pilot license. “The home has benefited my family by providing a great foundation, security, and financial freedom so my wife and I can use the money we would have spent on a mortgage to save and put toward a brighter future,” he says.
Message to HFOT’s Donors: “Thank you from the bottom of my heart for giving me and my wife a home that has forever changed my life for the better. You may not be able to see through my eyes what your gift has done for me, but let me say that I could not imagine any other home being more perfect for injured Veterans. I am truly appreciative of your help.”
- View our specially adapted custom homes in the Photo Gallery.
- Take a look inside our 250th home.
- Learn more about how our homes are constructed and all of the special features focused on our Veterans.
- Homes For Our Troops In the News. Catch up with the latest happenings in our Veterans community.