Monday, September 8, 2014

Home Free: Student Receives House During Titans Game

Gifts come in all shapes and sizes.

Vol State student Joseph James recently was honored at the Tennessee Titans in Nashville. He thought he was just going to be given the game ball.

Little did he know he and his family were about to given the gift of a house.

For weeks leading up to the game, folks with Operation Finally Home and Goodall Homes worked with James' wife, Jarin, to get the surprise set up.

To say the surprise worked would be an understatement.

"The moment they announced it I was completely amazed, shocked, and honored so much not just for what they were doing for my family but what they were doing for the veteran community," James said.

The amazing gift was made possible through donations from Goodall Homes and LP Building Productions.

James appeared in an award-winning ad for the college in 2012. The Ft. Campbell veteran spent four deployments in Iraq and Afghanistan. He lost his legs after an IED attack.

The new home, which will be located in Hendersonville, will be a four-bedroom, two-story house. The best part is this new home also will be 100 percent handicap accessible.

"I can do a 360 in a chair when I use that. It's going to completely accessible for me from the front driveway to the back porch, and I can leave in a wheelchair, which is going to be new for me," he said.

James isn't sure when he and his family will be able to move in, as the land where the house will be is still being graded.

Either way, he said having the new home will make things easier for he and his family as he transitions back into school next semester.

"It's going to make a huge difference for my family. Just knowing that we'l be closer to the school than where we were. It's amazing that they blessed us with this house and awesome that it's going to be so helpful to us," he said.

After taking a break from classes, James will return to Vol State in the spring to begin work on his business degree.

He's itching to get back to class.

"I'm ready to go. I'm really excited for it. The break I took was needed, but I'm ready to go back to school and get that degree finished," he said.

For video of James at the Titans game, here is the Channel 4 story.

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