On Saturday, Army Staff Sgt. Joshua Hall, along with his wife, Makayla, and his son, Liam, got their first look at their brand-new home, presented to them by Homes For Our Troops.
"It's mind-blowing. I mean we had a general idea, but I had no idea what it was really going to be like," Hall said. “I haven't even experienced it yet. I don't even know how is going to be but I know that I am grateful and we're grateful every day that goes by."
Hall was severely injured in 2012 while on duty in Afghanistan. He was with the 4th Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division when one step triggered an improvised explosive device, or IED.
The explosion caused him to lose his left leg with severe damage to his right leg, a broken pelvis and fractures in his neck and back. His heart stopped twice.
Hall said that every single home he's lived in since returning home has come with its own unique set of challenges. Everything from getting to his crying son in the middle of the night to cooking to showering has been more difficult since his return.
That is where Homes For Our Troops came in.
Homes For Our Troops is a national nonprofit that builds, through donations and sponsors, specially adapted homes for severely injured veterans.
The home presented to Hall's family has over 40 major adaptations that include widened hallways, pull-down shelving, lower countertops and a roll-in shower that not only makes it easier for the residents, but safer to navigate.
It took about 15 months, many, many donations, and plenty of volunteers from the community for the house to come together.
"We are incredibly blessed and excited. I am really excited that he'll be able to do a lot of the things he wasn't able to do that he'll be able to do now," said Makayla Hall.
This was the 256th home in the nation built by Homes For Our Troops. To read more about Hall’s story or to learn more about the organization, visit www.hfotusa.org.