homepage logo

Home addition for injured soldier nearly complete

By Staff | Dec 24, 2011

The addition to PFC Corey Kent’s home is scheduled to be done about two weeks.

When completed, the addition will provide Kent with freedom and mobility in his own home, as well as a place of privacy.

Kent was wounded July 2010 while serving in Afghanistan. He sustained life-threatening injuries, but has battled back through surgery and rehabilitation.

Kent is expected to return home permanently next summer, according to his stepfather Dan Ashby.

“We never knew what the cost was going to be, but we can never say thank you enough to the whole community for reaching out to our family,” Ashby said.

Construction of the addition to the Kent home was a true project of the community.

The U.S. Forces Fund joined forces with the local construction industry to make it happen.

Todd Gates, president of Bonita-based Gates Construction, said the entire project was done through the help of volunteers.

Manpower and supplies were all donated at no cost. Gates said about $100,000 worth of labor and materials were donated to the project.

“This made me very proud to be a builder,” Gates said. “This is a small token of our appreciation for the sacrifices Corey has made. The least we can do is give back a little bit.”

From ground breaking to the expected completion, the project will have taken roughly six months.

Gates said that time frame is a month ahead of schedule.

“Everyone came together as a community. I’m pleased with the outpouring of support,” Gates said. “From a community perspective, it couldn’t have gone smoother.”

Dan Ashby said the addition acts as an apartment for Corey, allowing him freedom and independence, but still keeping him close to family should he need assistance.

Ashby described Kent’s upcoming surgery as “pretty major,” but expects to have his stepson home for good by next summer.

With some only some sinks and countertops still to be installed, Ashby said Kent will have a nice place to come home to once his rehabilitation is completed.

“It’s looking great. It’s almost 99 percent done,” Ashby said.