The House of Heroes Connecticut is making it their mission to help military and public safety veterans through much needed home repairs.
The non-profit organization is dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of veterans in need with one-day home repairs.
Volunteers work to restore veterans homes and their spouses who are disabled, living on a fixed income, or facing other physical/financial challenges.
The organization joined forces with Johnson Brunetti, the Town of Wethersfield, Wethersfield Veterans Commission and student volunteers from Quinnipiac University.
Korean War veteran Frank Anastasio, 87, was on the receiving end of the organizations tireless effort to help military families.
The New Haven native Anastasio enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1950 as the Korean conflict emerged on the advice of his oldest brother Joe, who served in World War II. Six Anastasio brothers served their country during World War II and the Korean War. Anastasio was a cook aboard the USS LST-1084 and was on board during Operation Big Switch, the repatriation of North Korean prisoners as the conflict came to a close in 1954.
For 50 years, Anastasio has lived in the same home in Wethersfield.
“I can’t find the words to tell these people what I think of them,” said Anastasio. “My house looks great and it has never looked better.”
In 1994, Anastasio suffered a stroke and his wife, Sebastiana, is mobility limited.
The non-profit is providing their services for the family with a new handicap ramp, yard clean-up, landscaping and a variety of additional interior and exterior repairs.
Dennis Buden is the executive director and finds joy in helping servicemen and woman.
“When we go home at night, we put our heads on our pillow and we sleep well knowing that we helped a veteran,” said Buden. “It’s a remarkable feeling to see the look of gratitude on veterans faces and the tears in their eyes.”
Dozens of volunteers like to come back each year to provide peace of mind for some of the veterans household chores.
“Some of this work may seem simple, but it’s the simple repairs that mean the most to the veterans,” said Buden.
About 15 Johnson Brunetti employees and clients joined the student volunteers from Quinnipiac University to help.