After serving overseas in Afghanistan as a Marine and sustaining a serious injury, 25-year-old Christopher Holcomb recently returned to his hometown of Taylor, Michigan, to be reunited with his wife, Darcy, and their 3-year-old daughter, Veyda. Little did he know that his community had planned an extra special homecoming for the military family — emphasis on the word “home.”
Last week, the Holcomb family showed up to a house that they thought they were finalists to win through a local contest. But when they walked through the door and saw family pictures hanging on the wall, they discovered that it was theirs.
For weeks, volunteers from various organizations gathered together to get the house ready for the big reveal. The Taylor Veterans Home Program awarded the home and allowed for structural improvements, such as a new foundation, a new roof and a hot water system. Volunteers from the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters and Millwrights handled the renovations, using funds from the federal Neighborhood Stabilization Program and donated materials from the Home Depot Foundation and its local stores. Enchanted Makeovers furnished the home and added the final touches, such as personal family photos.
But the house wasn’t the only surprise in store for the Holcombs. A local construction company, Barton Malow, gave Chris something he truly needed: a good job. Through the national organization Helmets to Hardhats, Holcomb will soon begin a paid apprenticeship where he’ll be trained as a carpenter. Darcy received a closet full of new clothes, thanks to CAbi Clothing. And for his young daughter? She received a chance at a promising future, with full-ride scholarship to Schoolcraft College.
“It really feels good to have the community you grew up from since a little kid, to have the community reach out like this and help your family like this,” Holcomb told the small group gathered at the home. “It really is truly amazing, and I truly am blessed.”