Volunteers brave wet weather to lay sod for veterans new custom home

first_imgWASHOUGAL — The weather wasn’t ideal for landscaping on Saturday morning, with temperatures in the 40s and gusty wind sending rain sideways, but that didn’t stop about 100 volunteers from getting their hands dirty.People from across Southwest Washington and throughout the Portland-metro area showed up in force to slog through mud, lay sod and plant flowers at a home still under construction in Washougal. They did it for one reason: to give back to Army Spc. Alex Hussey.Hussey, who served with the 82nd Airborne Division, was deployed in early 2012 to the Kandahar Province in Afghanistan. Two weeks before his tour was over, on Aug. 7, 2012, Hussey was on patrol when an improvised explosive device went off. Hussey was knocked unconscious by the blast and spent six months in a coma. He lost both his legs, most of his left hand and sustained a traumatic brain injury.In a few months, Hussey, 26, and his wife, Kim Hussey, 25, will be handed the keys to their first home — a 2,500-square-foot, mortgage-free home built and donated by the nonprofit Homes For Our Troops. On Saturday, the volunteers helped prepare the outside of the house for the Husseys upcoming homecoming.The Husseys, who currently live in Milwaukie, Ore., were amazed by the turnout — particularly by those the couple had never met.“So many people showed up to support us,” Kim Hussey said. “It is heartwarming. It really is.”“I’m very thankful,” Alex Hussey added.Homes For Our Troops builds and donates specially adapted custom homes for severely injured post-Sept. 11 veterans, said Mell Barbosa, a community outreach coordinator with the nonprofit. Last weekend, the organization handed over the keys to the 250th home built since 2004, she said.last_img

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