Just before the holidays, credit unions and community members welcomed Marine Corporal Justin McLoud to his new, specially adapted home in Festus. McLoud lost both legs and his left arm to an explosion while serving overseas. The home was built by non-profit organization Homes for Our Troops (HFOT) thanks to a $100,000 donation from credit unions, which served as the Mission Partner for the project.
The Key Ceremony took place on December 22 and began with an escort procession of Freedom Riders, law enforcement and fire fighters. Peggy Nalls, Missouri Credit Union Association (MCUA) Chief Advocacy Officer addressed the crowd.
“Credit unions stand for service and community,” said Nalls. “We jumped at the opportunity to sponsor Justin’s house because he volunteered for all of us, and now we’re privileged to volunteer on his behalf.”
State Senator Gary Romine (R-District 3) thanked McLoud for his service and let the group know that his door is always open. As the final speaker, McLoud talked candidly about how he worried about providing a home for his family following his injury.
“Thanks for coming out today and supporting me,” said McLoud. “As I was laying in the hospital after my injury, I wondered what I would do about a house. This is unreal, and I could never find a house this customized and modified to fit my needs.”
The home features a track system that will help McLoud move around the bedroom and bathroom. The home is customized with roll under appliances, wider hallways, flush thresholds, a roll-in shower, a flat backyard and more. Before the home tour, McLoud closed the Key Ceremony with a few final words.
“Enjoy my house. It’s going to blow your mind.”
McLoud is the second service member to receive a specially adapted home in Missouri thanks to HFOT and Missouri credit unions. The first was built in Columbia for Staff Sergeant Robert Canine.
Photo captions (from top)