MT. JULIET, Tenn. — Two Tennessee veterans will soon move into a new home provided to them free of cost by a nonprofit — a home that is literally built on thanks for their service.
The LeBerge family recently visited their new home for the first time and found small "notes of love" written by those who took part in the project — notes that will be sealed into the walls of their new house.
It was an emotional experience for David and Tammy LeBerge who count their blessings every day knowing their son Ethan managed to survive a devastating attack while serving in Afghanistan.
Ethan LeBerge was a mere 10 feet from a suicide bomber who detonated and killed some of his colleagues. From the hospital, he read every word of encouragement — not unlike the notes he now found around every wall of his new house.
"Our minds are spinning every single day with what this means for our family. It creates so many opportunities for kids," Ethan LeBerge said.
His wife, Arin, is also an Army veteran, and the couple shares share two children. Their story captivated Operation Finally Home, who managed to find contractors and a local development willing to take on the task.
Rusty Carroll is the executive director of Operation Finally Home, and says they have roughly 300 families reaching out for help all over the country, but everything seemed to align for the LeBerges.
"We just felt like they were just a model for the type of veterans and families that the community wants to come together, support and provide them the foundation so they can continue to move forward," Carroll said.
Since 2005, Operation Finally Home has completed or is in the process of completing more than 350 projects. The LeBerge home marks the 10th home in Tennessee since 2011.
This story was originally published by Levi Ismail on Scripps station WTVF in Nashville.