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A Custom Home for A Disabled Warrior

Dory Nissen - 700 Club Producer

US Marine James Poggi’s job in Afghanistan was important, getting helicopters and their crew in the air, and back safely in the middle of war.

James says, birds are coming in, doing a quick landing, and they have to take back off. And they need a specific piece of equipment and it’s not running for them. I could get it running right when they needed it running, so they could do their jobs.”

When he was deployed, James left behind his wife Stefanie and son Logan.  Stefanie remembers her constant concern.

Stefanie says, “I thought about him 24/7, all day, every day.  It was very stressful.

One night, James helped bring in damaged chopper.  

James says, when they changed the pitch of the blades to bring the nose of the aircraft down slowly, it twisted. I ducked and it clipped me, I went down.”

James lost his left leg and the use of his right arm. Stefanie faithfully stood by him while they navigated their new norm.

Stefanie says, “In sickness and in health, right? It’s what we’re all about.  

James replies “That’s right. It doesn’t matter.”

Even with Stefanie’s devoted help, maneuvering through their split-level home was nearly impossible for James.

Stefanie explains, “He would have to crawl everywhere. He was constantly falling down stairs. The doorways were too narrow. His chair wouldn’t fit through any of them. He would have to crawl into the kids’ rooms to say goodnight. Or they would have to come out to give him a hug. It didn’t work at all.”

James and Stefani’s situation changed when CBN’s Helping The Home Front teamed up with Operation Finally Home, who builds custom houses for disabled warriors. The first step, was a surprise groundbreaking ceremony.

Stephanie remembers, “The kids were like are we part of this parade? I guess we are part of it! No way. Nah-uh, not us”

Then Homes By Design started building. Before the house was complete the community was invited to write messages and post them inside the framework at the notes of love event.  The Poggi’s came to see the progress.  

Stefanie says, they are so heartwarming. And everyone thanking him for his service and wishing our family good luck. We can’t wait to be home.  We are home, but we can’t wait to stay home.

Soon the house was complete! Volunteers helped interior designer Tiffany Nimmons with the finishing touches.  Then, it was time to welcome the Poggis home. Bob Dee was the builder who made the dream a reality.

Bob says, “I want to make sure that we give a very special thanks to the Christian Broadcast Network. They made this happen with their substantial financial support and their logistical support, it took a huge weight off my shoulders.”

Stefanie says, “Thank you so much for everything you’ve done.  Operation Finally Home, CBN, Bob the builder.  Thank you so much for making this dream come true for our family.”

The Poggi family is now settled into their brand-new home.

James concludes, “People keep telling me that I’m a hero.  I'm not. They are.  The real heroes are the people who give us something to wake up for every day. CBN, Homes By Design, Operation Finally Home.  Even down to the people who gave a dollar.  They are the real heroes.

Family says, “thank you”

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