STAFFORD, Va. - A Virginia veteran who was wounded while serving in the Iraq war is getting much-deserved home renovation this weekend, thanks to the generosity of many local volunteers.
Corporal Brandon Burns served as a Marine, and he came under sniper fire in Al Falluja, Iraq in November 2004. As a result of the incident, Burns lost one-fourth of his brain, and was left paralyzed on the right side of his body.
This weekend, D.C. area construction unions are accepting a challenge from the Wounded Warrior Project, and renovating Burns’ Stafford, Va. home. And with right around 24 hours to complete the job, they’ll be working fast.
The Wounded Warrior Project hooked up with the group Helmets to Hardhats to fix up the home. While the Wounded Warrior Project made arrangements to get the necessary materials, Helmets to Hardhats recruited volunteers from local construction unions to make the work happen.
Construction started at 8 a.m. Saturday, and within a few minutes, there was already progress to be seen. Electricians were busy changing out lighting inside the house, while carpenters got started on added shelving for storage. Plans are also in the works to add a breakfast bar and a small ramp to help Burns get around. The house will also get some essentials like new insulation, gutter cleanings, and repairs to cracks that have developed inside the home.
Meanwhile, Burns and his family are spending a couple of days on a getaway in Baltimore while the project is underway. They’ll be home Sunday, and the big reveal of all the renovations will happen Sunday afternoon.
Brandi Hall of the Wounded Warrior Project tells FOX 5 all of this started with a repair to a fence at Burns’ home. While that was taking place, the organization found that his house really needed some additional work, and they reached out to Helmets to Hardhats and program director Rob Schwartz to help make the home renovation project become a reality.
Among those groups participating are Helmets to Hardhats, Community Hub for Opportunities in Construction Employment (C.H.O.I.C.E), International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW), United Brotherhood of Carpenters (UBC), International Union of Operating Engineers (IUOE), and Laborers' International Union of North America (LiUNA).
For more on Burns’ story, click here:
About Helmets to Hardhats
Helmets to Hardhats is a national, nonprofit program that connects National Guard, Reserve, retired and transitioning active-duty military service members with skilled training and quality career opportunities in the construction industry. The program is designed to help military service members successfully transition back into civilian life by offering them the means to secure a quality career in the construction industry. For more information, follow these links: