“Seldom do we hear stories of people who give. We always hear stories about people who take. Meet the good Sheppard and learn something.”
by Ken Smith
I got an email from someone who knew someone who knew something that they thought might be important to me. “You wantta hear a story about how a combat wounded, disabled Marine in California had repairs done to his house by a group of 50 college students he asked?” Sure I said, what’s the story? Read the email I am about to send to you.
50 San Diego Students Volunteer 24 Hours of Labor to Renovate the Home of Purple Heart Marine Veteran for Embrace H3 Nonprofit Program on December 10th Over $30,000 worth of labor and donated or purchased materials went into the restoration of disabled Marine Sgt. Jason Swofford’s Oceanside home
A total of 50 San Diego College students and recent graduates were led by various volunteer contractors who devoted hours of labor to restore the home of disabled Purple Heart recipient Marine Veteran, Sgt. Jason Swofford on Saturday, December 10th, 2011. The ongoing mission was part of the San Diego nonprofit, Embrace Healing Our Heroes’ Homes (H3) program. Sgt. Swofford no longer has full usage of his right arm and suffers from mental trauma as a result of an explosion while serving in Afghanistan in 2009.
Over $30,000 worth of labor, donated materials/supplies and purchased materials/supplies went towards the restoration, resulting in a better quality of life for the disabled marine veteran. Sgt. Swofford’s house now features retrofit/green windows, a remodeled kitchen with marble countertops, garbage disposal and cast iron sink, tile backsplash, new cabinets with new pantry for easier access for Sgt. Swofford, along with marble tile flooring in both bathrooms, a completely remodeled shower in the master bedroom with ADA railings, modern plumbing, and functioning electrical outlets. The exterior of the house is newly landscaped; featuring new rain gutters installed and painted eaves.
“I can’t begin to tell you how honored we are to serve Sergeant Swofford and his family,” said H3 Founder, Sean Sheppard (www.TheGoodSheppard.tv). “To see such a diverse group of people come together for the purpose of helping a true American Hero is what Healing Our Heroes’ Homes is all about. It’s what this country is all about.”
Alliance Residential Development (www.allresco.com), an Arizona-based real estate development company, played a major role in the event, mobilizing all volunteer contractors. “It was an awesome experience for everyone involved,” said Alliance Senior Project Manager, Jim Frager. “ I can’t find a better purpose than giving back to our community and military veterans.” Other key participants of the Embrace H3 program include: Triumph Tile, Hajoca Corporation (Plumbing), Tone Framing, Scott Heyden Landscape and Grill Daddy BBQ. Funding provided by The Leichtag Family Foundation, Grainger Foundation and Sempra Energy Foundation.
With key investors coming to the table, Embrace plans to restore at least 24 homes in Southern California and Arizona in 2012. With a goal to restore the homes of low-income, disabled veteran homeowners, H3 falls in line with Embrace’s mission to mobilize college student volunteers of different background and ethnicities to serve less fortunate members of civilian and veteran communities. Efforts like H3 demonstrate that people can work together in harmony on a regular basis, despite our differences, for a common cause.
For more information on Embrace Founder Sean Sheppard,