Marine Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer and his wife Meghan have been looking forward to putting down permanent roots in the Wellington area — and they recently saw a roof appear on their new home being built by the nonprofit Homes For Our Troops.
A community kickoff event in April was supposed to celebrate the Dwyers’ new home. While that has been canceled, the project itself is still moving forward.
Dwyer is not only a military veteran, he was injured in Afghanistan after stepping on an improvised explosive device (IED) during patrol in 2011.
Dwyer lost his left leg and severely damaged his right leg and right arm. Since the incident, he has undergone more than 50 surgeries and spent more than four years in recovery at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where met his future wife.
Intensive rehabilitation has helped, and Dwyer even found the motivation to become a successful professional racecar driver for Mazda in 2014. He even drives without modifications to the car. Unfortunately, he continues to face physical obstacles every day.
“I’m currently not racing. I’ve been in and out of surgeries over the last two years,” Dwyer said. “Every time I think I’m ready, something health wise comes up.”
These limitations make navigating around a typical house extremely difficult. But now the Dwyer family is looking forward to starting a new life in Florida, thanks to Homes For Our Troops. The organization broke ground on a house filled with special accommodations, and free to Dwyer, earlier this year.
The focus of the organization is to help injured troops rebuild their lives.
“Homes For Our Troops has built and donated 293 specially adapted custom homes in 42 states since 2004,” HFOT Marketing Associate Teresa Verity said. “All our homes are four-bedroom, two-bath and just over 2,800 square feet. There are currently 81 projects underway nationwide.”
Dwyer retired from the Marines last year and is staying with Meghan’s family while the house is under construction. The young couple is excited to get to know the community at some of the future events planned for the project, including a volunteer day where the public can help with landscaping and making the home presentable.
“We are probably looking at a September completion date, barring a temporary shutdown due to the COVID-19 outbreak,” Verity said.
The community kickoff event planned for April was postponed. “In the meantime, people can support Liam’s project by making a donation or spreading the word about his build with their family and friends,” Verity said.
Those interested in learning more about future community events related to the Dwyer project can contact HFOT’s Community Outreach Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For Dwyer, recovery continues while he waits to claim the keys to his new home. “I was getting around pretty well until last Monday [March 16], when my kneecap gave out and broke in half,” he said. “We are waiting on a new part to come in, but the coronavirus is holding things up.”
To learn more about the mission of Homes For Our Troops, their projects, home designs and adaptations offered, visit www.hfotusa.org. Stay updated on Staff Sgt. Liam Dwyer’s story and events at www.hfotusa.org/dwyer.