The diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease was a major blow to Army Staff Sgt. Mario Davis.
The 11-year veteran of both Iraq and Afghanistan lost his career, his income, and his dreams for a happy future with his family when he heard that diagnosis.
“I basically had everything taken away from me that I had been working for for 11 years. I had planned on doing 20 years, getting out, and becoming a police officer, but that kind of changed,” Davis told Fox News.
His dream of a life of serving his nation and community was gone—and so was a lot of his salary.
The disease hurt Davis financially and jeopardized his future livelihood. He had a wife and three children to support, and he couldn’t afford to buy a home on his now limited income.
In a heart-warming gesture of care and support, members of his community stepped up and helped out.
A local developer, David Belman of Belman Homes, got together with “Operation Finally Home,” a non-profit that helps provide mortgage-free homes to America’s military heroes and the widows of the fallen.
People who had never met Mario Davis, and who had never even heard of him before Belman and Operation Finally Home started their campaign, all came together.
People donated materials, money, and labor to design and build a home big enough for a disabled father, his wife, and three growing kids.
“A big footprint and I happened to be the only one in the area that had large enough lots for this,” David Belman explained.
Davis was deeply moved by the outpouring of community support.
“Love went into building this home and the love will continue to be in this home when we raise our kids in it. That’s what makes a house a home—the love you put into a home,” Davis said.
His wife Carissa is equally excited—and relieved, “seeing the kids grow up and having a safe and quiet place that we can call home forever,” she said.
Mario Davis went from being a man with a dream of a life of service, to a man with heavy worries about the future of his family, to becoming the head of a happy household in his own home.
Many people talk about “honoring our veterans.” This is what it looks like when people really do that.
Mario Davis gave all he could for his country and his community. And this time, his community really did give back.
Hopefully, stories like this will become so commonplace they no longer make the news.
In the meantime, a big “Thank you” to Staff Sgt. Mario Davis—and another to the people of Waukesha who pulled together to help a vet.
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