St. Louis—The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) provided flooring for its 61st home in support of the Gary Sinise Foundation R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment). The home dedication for United States Air Force Staff Sergeant (Ret.) Brian Schiefer took place Jan. 19 in Santa Rosa Beach, Fla.
The R.I.S.E. program builds custom, specially adapted smart homes for severely wounded veterans and first responders. Flooring for the project was donated by NWFA members Revel Woods and Installers Warehouse.
According to the NWFA, staff sergeant Schiefer decided to join the Air Force during his junior year in high school and began training shortly after his graduation. On Nov. 11, 2008, he was conducting live close air support training when his vehicle rolled over, throwing him from the truck. He underwent a 16-hour surgery to stabilize his spine, spent five weeks in the ICU, five months in inpatient therapy, and six months in outpatient therapy.
Today, he continues to adjust to his new life as a paraplegic. “As a result of his experience, staff sergeant Schiefer has become an advocate for patients who endure injuries similar to his own,” said Michael Martin, president, NWFA. “He sits on several medical research and technology panels to give voice to all spinal cord injury patients so that they receive the top-quality care and transitional support they need to live product lives. We’re honored to partner with Revel Woods and Installers Warehouse to provide beautiful wood floors for his new home.”
In addition to the 61 homes already completed, NWFA said it is currently working with its members to source wood flooring for 16 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.