LOUIS, Mo.—The National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) said it has provided flooring for its 62nd home in support of the Gary Sinise Foundation R.I.S.E. program (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment). According to the company, the R.I.S.E. program builds mortgage-free, custom, specially adapted smart homes for severely wounded veterans and first responders. The home dedication for United States Army Sergeant (Ret.) Christopher Kurtz took place on March 24 in Clarksville, Tenn. Flooring for the project was donated by NWFA member Premiere Finishing & Coating.
Sergeant Kurtz said he joined the Army in 2009 and was deployed with the 101st Airborne Division to the Arghandab River Valley region of Afghanistan in June 2010 where he encountered combat situations daily. He was on patrol in Dec. 2010 when an improvised explosive device went off nearby. Sergeant Kurtz lost both of his legs above the knee, lost two fingers on his left hand and broke his pelvis in three places.
“Sergeant Kurtz’s injuries were quite severe,” said Michael Martin, president and CEO, NWFA. “Once he was stabilized on the battlefield, he was evacuated to Kandahar Air Field, then flown to Landstuhl, Germany before arriving at Walter Reed Medical Center to undergo additional surgeries. After four years of active duty service, he medically retired in 2013. We’re honored to partner with Premiere Finishing & Coating to provide beautiful wood floors for his new home.”
In addition to the 62 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, according to the company.