St. Louis, Mo.—The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) has provided flooring for its 54th home in support of 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 United Stated Marine Corps Corporal Josue Barron took place on March 4, in Temecula, Calif. Flooring for the project was donated by NWFA member Mannington.
Corporal Barron joined the 0311 (infantry) and was a fire team leader with 3rd Battalion 5th Marines out of Camp Pendleton. His first deployment was the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit in 2009, which took him to Japan, Korea, Thailand, the Philippines and Australia. He was injured in 2010 during his second deployment to Afghanistan while on foot patrol. On the way back to the base, his engineer stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED), hitting them both, and resulting in amputations for both.
“Corporal Barron joined the Marine Corps when he was just 17 years old, and credits them with providing the discipline and leadership he needed in his life,” said Michael Martin, NWFA president and CEO. “He received a Purple Heart and combat action ribbon for his actions, and credits other disabled veterans who face tougher challenges with inspiring him to overcome his own. We’re honored to partner with Mannington to provide flooring for his new home.”
In addition to the 54 homes already completed, NWFA currently is working with its members to source wood flooring for 13 additional R.I.S.E. homes in various stages of planning and construction. Currently, 141 NWFA member companies have donated product, logistics and installation services in locations throughout the United States, with a total value of more than $5.2 million.