An army veteran who served the nation now has a home in Glastonbury that will serve his needs.
“To have this given to me? I mean, my God, I don’t even have a mortgage to think about-- that is insane!” Army Specialist Craig Hall told NBC Connecticut.
Walking through the front door of his brand new house Wednesday was a dream years in the making for Hall.
“When I was in, I was working towards that dream,” Hall said, “and I felt like at the time it was taken from me.”
After losing his leg in Iraq in 2007 when his tank was hit in an attack, Hall struggled to rebuild a life in New England.
“I wanted to be in the service, you know, that’s what I always wanted to do,” Hall explained.
Now, he sees a future again with his kids and his fiancé—one he can conquer confidently with his new home.
“It’s overwhelming to think that there’s organizations out there that are here to help out our wounded vets and give them gifts that are almost unimaginable,” Hall said moments after his house reveal on Wednesday.
His new home is the second house given to a veteran in Connecticut by Building Homes for Heroes. Andy Pujol started the organization after being in search and rescue on Ground Zero following 9/11.
“Something so tragic, so amazingly horrific in some ways has turned into something so beautiful,” Pujol, who is the founder, president and a volunteer for the organization said. “Hopefully, this will outlast the struggling and the suffering and the pain.”
Getting Hall’s home ready was a team effort.
“I’m honored to be a part of this project,” said Marine Corps veteran Gregory Karon, whose landscaping company worked on Hall’s yard. Building Homes for Heroes gifted Karon his Ellington home back in 2013.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” said Liz Koiva, who is the owner of Nordic Builders in Tolland with her husband, and worked on both Connecticut homes with the organization.
On Wednesday, after months and an effort that took an entire community to pull off, Andy and the town of Glastonbury finally welcomed Craig home, just in time for the holidays.
“That’s what I’m really looking forward to,” said Hall, “having our whole family here at my house. I’m so thankful. So incredibly thankful.”
Craig’s house is the 200th mortgage-free home given to a veteran by Building Homes for Heroes.
After moving in this week, Craig will continue to work as a mobile veteran outreach specialist with a veterans center out of Rocky Hill.