FORT WORTH -- Kevin Bruffett joined the U.S. Army at 30-years-old in 2010, a decision heavily influenced by the economic recession but one he was happy to make. Just two years later, he was nearly blown up in Afghanistan when his vehicle was hit with an explosive device.
"The doors were blown off and myself and another individual were ejected from the vehicle," recalls the retired sergeant, who was knocked unconscious by the blast and had to be medevacked to safety.
Six years later, his recovery remains a work in progress.
"I still have issues with my vision, with my bladder, my balance, my back, memory. We're working on all those things."
To help with his recovery, he and his family were awarded a mortgage-free home through the Military Warriors Support Foundation's Homes 4 Wounded Heroes program, with the property deed presented during a ceremony held at the Fort Worth Invitational at Colonial Country Club, a contributing supporter of the foundation. It was the 820th home donated through the program in just six years!
The foundation doesn't just give away homes, however. To ensure a successful ownership a three-year mentorship program must be completed first during which the family pays the mortgage on the property, then upon completion of the program the remainder of the mortgage is paid off.
"We teach them how to own a home, take care of a home," says the foundation's founder and CEO Leroy Sisco, a retired lieutenant general. "We teach them how to budget and handle their finances. As a result, 98.6 percent of them are still in the homes."
The foundation encourages all wounded veterans and Gold Star Families in need of a home--or a car, as they award those, too--to apply. Because when veterans come home, they should have a home of their own to go to!
"It's done a 180 for my mental state, for our financial state, and it's just been a life-saver," says Bruffett.
"We were renters before," adds his wife, Angela, "so having a home that we actually own, that we get to go home to everyday with our family and our children has just been everything."