Wayfair Furnishes Fifth Home with Homes For Our Troops
In 2013, Army SGT Brandon Korona went on his first deployment to Afghanistan as a combat engineer. On June 23 of that year, his vehicle was struck by an explosive device, breaking every bone below his left knee. After four years of pain and attempting to keep his lower left leg, Brandon made the courageous decision to amputate. He was only the second person to undergo an experimental procedure, giving him the ability to control a robotic prosthetic with his brain, performing complex actions and feeling certain sensations. Brandon admits that on days where the prosthetic is too much to handle on his skin and body, a house “full of stairs” can be frustratingly difficult on him and his wife, Chelsea.
Enter Homes For Our Troops, a nonprofit that builds and donates specially-adapted custom homes nationwide to severely injured post-9/11 Veterans like Brandon, enabling them to rebuild their lives. Wayfair has been a proud partner to Homes For Our Troops since 2018, supporting the organization in a variety of ways, including completely furnishing many of these specially-adapted homes, inviting customers to donate to the organization at checkout, and through employee volunteering initiatives.
This year, we were proud to furnish our fifth Homes For Our Troops home for the Korona family, providing accessibility and comfort through their transition. Wayfair employees also had the opportunity to volunteer to complete the final touches for the home. With many donated furniture items requiring multiple hands and heavy lifting, volunteers from Wayfair gathered to put together all-new furniture and decor for the Korona family. In addition, Wayfair volunteers joined Homes For Our Troops, members of the local community, and other organizations, to help complete the landscaping for the entire Korona property. The team laid sod, planted bushes and spread mulch – all to help provide the Korona family a more comfortable life they can enjoy with their family for years to come.
According to Kaiya DiPippo, Wayfair’s volunteer lead: “There is real beauty in watching people from all backgrounds come together for a common cause, and for all that SGT Korona sacrificed for us, volunteering to help make his house into a home was the absolute least that we could do to show our support.”
For Wayfair employees, volunteering to support Homes for Our Troops and the Korona family was truly meaningful. “It was incredibly humbling to participate in such a meaningful event for the Korona family,” said Wayfair volunteer Stephanie Isenman. “I volunteered because I believe that our soldiers give so much, or all, of themselves when fighting for our freedom and they need support back at home. The Wayfair team had the honor of creating an American Flag out of the grass pattern, which was such a great touch to the overall landscaping job at hand,” said Isenman.
“When the Wayfair team was out there working together to accomplish a goal for such a deserving family, it felt like my way of giving back and driving positive change where I could,” said Afghanistan veteran and Wayfair volunteer John Schiffer. “To me it really shows the power that coming together and caring about a common cause brings.”
On September 25, 2021, Homes For Our Troops presented the keys to the custom home for SGT Brandon Korona and his family, celebrating a new start to their life. At Wayfair, we couldn’t be more proud to have been a part of this project and help provide the Korona family with a house that truly feels like home.