November, 2005, Gerald “Drew” was in the gunner position providing rear security while conducting a combat patrol. During this patrol they came around a corner and the vehicle Drew was in engulfed in flames from a shaped charge explosion. Drew was medically evacuated from the immediate area with blood coming out of his ears and covering his face. He arrived at one of their temporary hospital tents and had superficial shrapnel removed from his face and returned to the mission. Drew experienced several more blasts, countless high stress situations where he or his bothers weren’t sure they would make it home and some didn’t. Drew has also struggled with a nearly 1 year fight of therapy to try to get reinstated in his unit but unfortunately he wasn’t able to achieve the type of progress required to return to duty. Drew is the first candidate selected to receive a new Mortgage Free home through Operation Finally Home in Wisconsin in the Village of Jackson.
Bo enlisted in the United States Army on July 23rd, 2003. It was his dream to become a soldier since the age of 6. For Christmas one year he was given a GI Joe from his mother and he promised her that he would become one knowing how proud she would be. When Bo was 10 she passed, and that is when he promised to himself and to his mother’s memory that he would become a soldier to make her proud. And so he did for 11 years; with deployments in Kuwait, Iraq, and Afghanistan. During his deployment in Kuwait an IED was set off resulting in the death of SSG Mason and harm of surrounding soldiers. Bo and two other soldiers were taken off the road for 5 days and received Purple Hearts. He was then medically retired due to his PTSD and back injuries. Currently, he is a Junior at Marquette University getting his Bachelor of Science in BioChemistry and Molecular Biology. He is the current President and the founder of the Marquette University Student Veterans Association and has put in 150 hours of volunteer physician shadow time at the VA hospital. He referees youth soccer to help teach children good sportsmanship and respect. Bo is the second candidate selected to receive a new Mortgage Free home through Operation Finally Home in Wisconsin in the Village of Jackson.