The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) has provided flooring for its 23rd home in partnership with the Gary Sinise Foundation R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment). The R.I.S.E. program builds custom, specially adapted smart homes for severely wounded veterans and first responders. The home dedication for US Army Corporal Alan Babin, Jr. took place on November 10, in Lakeway, Texas. Flooring for the project was donated by NWFA members Mullican Flooring and Trinity Hardwood Distributors.
Cpl. Babin enlisted in the Army at age 22 and became a medic with the elite 82nd Airborne. His injuries occurred on March 31, 2003 when he responded to the call for a medic during heavy gunfire on a bridge over the Euphrates. Cpl. Babin rushed to aid his wounded fellow soldier, and received an abdominal wound from an AK-47 in the process. He has endured 70-plus surgeries, a stroke, meningitis, five brain surgeries, losing 90% of his stomach, his spleen and part of his pancreas, and developed bodily necrosis. In recognition of his sacrifices, Cpl. Babin received the Bronze Star with “V” for Valor, and the Purple Heart for his heroism.
“Cpl. Babin is certainly an inspiration,” says NWFA President and CEO, Michael Martin. “Doctors initially told him he would spend the rest of his life in a nursing home, but he had other plans. With help and inspiration from his mother, he relearned how to breathe, talk, eat, and move. Now, he uses his experiences to inspire others and to advocate for the disabled community’s needs. We’re honored to partner with Mullican and Trinity to provide flooring for his new home.”
In addition to the 23 homes already completed, NWFA currently is working with its members to source wood flooring for 21 additional R.I.S.E. homes in various stages of planning and construction. Currently, 51 NWFA member companies have donated product, logistics, and installation services in locations throughout the United States, with a total value of more than $3.52 million. A list of all NWFA R.I.S.E. partners is listed at http://www.nwfa.org/giving-back.aspx.
By the end of this year, 59 specially adapted smart homes will be completed or underway through the Gary Sinise Foundation R.I.S.E. program. To learn more about the program, and how you and/or your company can get involved, contact the NWFA at 800.422.4556, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.