August 20, 2015
Residents of the Legacy Lakes community in Aberdeen, NC, welcomed new neighbors on Tuesday, August 18, when SGT (Ret) Jonathan Rivenbark and his wife assumed ownership of a home built to accommodate his injuries. The 2,300 sq. ft. home features wider door openings and hallways, lower counters in the kitchen and bathrooms, zero-threshold entries at showers and exterior doors, and a sidewalk surrounding the home to better accommodate SGT (Ret) Rivenbark's disabilities and a wheelchair.
Built by McKee Homes and valued at more than $250,000, the home is provided with only a $50,000 mortgage to the veteran as part of the Helping A Hero program which works with builders, suppliers, landowners and communities nationwide to provide homes with a minimal mortgage in planned communities where veterans receive ongoing support from neighbors, home owners associations, and other nearby service and veterans organizations. The Rivenbark home is one of three homes being dedicated this month by Helping A Hero and is the 3rd home completed in North Carolina. McKee Homes has previously built three adaptive homes for military veterans, though this is the first time it has partnered with Helping A Hero. McKee Homes contributed $50,000 toward the price of the home through its Joe McKee Memorial Alzheimer's Fund. They also coordinated contributions of labor, material or both from building suppliers and vendors eager to support the project. Developer Mountain Real Estate Capital donated the lot at Legacy Lakes, located in Aberdeen, NC, near Pinehurst. The "Key Ceremony" at which SGT (Ret) Rivenbark and his wife, Yulia, assume ownership of their home was held on Tuesday, August 18, at 11:30 a.m. The home is located at: 380 Kerr Lake Rd, Aberdeen, NC, 28315.
"McKee Homes is delighted to be a part of this worthy effort to provide for our nation's veterans in a manner that honors their service, supports their families, accommodates their continued recovery and assures their independence," said Pat McKee, president of McKee Homes. For the Rivenbark home, McKee reports well over $200,000 has been donated by tradespeople, suppliers, the developer and the builder.Helping A Hero: A National Organization Providing Homes for Wounded Vets
The Helping A Hero program has to date, awarded 100 homes in 22 states across the country. Working with developers of planned communities, with homes on average valued at $250,000, the organization works to settle veteran families in stable, safe and supportive communities. Homes are titled in the veteran's name and recipient wounded veterans contribute $50,000 toward the final purchase price of the home along with using their Specially Adapted Housing Grant provided by the VA. "Our $50,000 mortgage allows the wounded veteran to participate in the purchase of the home at a level he is able to afford on his fixed disability income," explains Helping A Hero's Chairman Emeritus, Meredith Iler. The mortgage together with insurance, taxes and maintenance is generally less than an average month's rent and, in addition to being affordable, also provides a personally adapted residence that will allow the veteran as much independence as possible in the course of daily life.
About SGT (Ret) Jonathan Rivenbark
SGT (Ret) Jonathan Rivenbark grew up in Eastern North Carolina and enlisted in the Army in 2009. Stationed at Ft Bragg and an Airborne Infantryman, he was deployed to Afghanistan twice. During his second deployment in 2012, SGT Rivenbark experienced an ambush that resulted in four machine gunshot wounds that fractured both of his knees, causing severe nerve and tissue damage. Today, he spends most of his time in a wheelchair and uses a stimulator to help fire the muscles in his legs. "Our new house will provide Yulia and me with a far more comfortable place to call home. The specially designed aspects will really help me move around more easily and make it easier on my wonderful wife, too," says SGT (Ret) Rivenbark.
About McKee Homes, LLC:
McKee Homes has built quality homes with the goal of creating the best home buying experience possible throughout Eastern North Carolina and surrounding areas for many years. The homebuilder currently has housing options in and around the Fayetteville, Fort Bragg, Pinehurst, Raleigh and Wilmington metro areas. As one of the fastest growing new home builders of Eastern North Carolina, McKee Homes made Inc. Magazine's 5000 list, with a ranking of number 13 in North Carolina in 2014. Visit http://www.mckeehomesnc.com/ to learn more.