St. Louis, Miss.—The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) has provided flooring for its 58th 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 States Army First Sergeant (Ret.) Jarrid “Jay” Collins took place on Aug. 5 in Odessa, Fla. Flooring for the project was donated by NWFA member Mannington, according to the company. As a Green Beret, Collins deployed to Afghanistan, Iraq and twice to South America. During his 2007 Afghanistan deployment, Collins was hit in the arm, continued fighting and later helped perform surgery on himself in the field of battle. He returned to full combat operations after just 30 days of recovery.
A few months later, he sustained severe injuries to his leg. Collins overcame these injuries to be selected for US Army Special Operations Command, but ultimately had to have his leg amputated due to the severity of his condition. Following his amputation, Collins requalified as a fully deployable Green Beret and served five more years on active duty.
“First Sergeant Collins is a highly-decorated Army Special Forces combat veteran and Purple Heart recipient with more than two decades of service,” said Michael Martin, NWFA president and CEO. “His dedication to serving our country is admirable, as is his commitment to not letting his injuries define his path. We’re honored to partner with Mannington to provide beautiful wood floors for his new home.”
In addition to the 58 homes already completed, NWFA said it is currently is working with its members to source wood flooring for 14 additional R.I.S.E. homes in various stages of planning and construction. Currently, 143 NWFA member companies have donated product, logistics, and installation services in locations throughout the United States, with a total value of more than $5.7 million, according to the company.