A Branson veteran who was wounded in Iraq will soon get a new home thanks to a national non-profit group and a Missouri organization. KSMU’s Michele Skalicky has more.
Scott West is back home in Branson now, but about three years ago, while the army specialist was serving his country in Iraq, he was severely injured in an explosion.
"He was driving a Humvee, and an IED was spotted at the last second, and Specialist West decided to jerk the wheel of the Humvee so that the vehicle would go over the IED and explode on his side of the vehicle rather than under his fellow soldiers."Amy McLard is vice-president of public legislative affairs for the MO Credit Union Association. The group announced today that they, along with the national non-profit organization Homes for Our Troops, will build West a new home in Branson. West and his fiancée Samantha hope to one day get married and raise a family there. According to McLard, the home that eventually will be built for West will be especially adapted to his needs. He uses prosthetic legs, but the home will be wheelchair-accessible for when he needs to use a wheelchair.
"So, there will be a roll-in shower. There will be cabinets that are especially accessible from a wheelchair. There won't be a ramp going up to the front door. It'll be created so that the foundation is flush and that he can, if he's in a wheelchair, roll right in."Credit union employees across Missouri are donating money for the project, but contributions from the community are needed, too, McLard says, in the form of both money and services.
"We are asking people to lend their services if they are a contractor, if they have land, if they are able to provide countertops or cabinets or any of these things. It really is a community effort reaching out to the ultimate volunteer."McLard says when land becomes available—either thru a donation or when they find a suitable lot to purchase--construction will begin immediately.
MO Credit Unions have set an initial goal of two homes at 100,000-dollars each. But they hope to build more.
This will be the first home built for an injured veteran in Missouri thru Homes for Our Troops. To find out how to help, visit www.homesforourtroops.org and click on “Homes” and then on Missouri.