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Thieves steal $5k in housing materials for WA disabled vet’s future home

Homes for our Troops. (Master Sgt. Dan Richardson/U.S. Air Force)
January 15, 2019

A disabled veteran in Washington state was the victim of theft when someone stole more than $5,000 in donated supplies that were intended to build a house for him.

Homes for Our Troops, a nonprofit organization that receives local business donations to build custom homes for severely injured post-9/11 veterans, had situated a locked box outside of the future home in Maytown, to keep Sgt. Jereme Sawyer’s donations, KIRO 7 News reported.

The thieves jimmied the lock off the box and “stole a total of nine windows,” KIRO 7 News reported.

“When you feel like you’re not really worthy of a home in the first place and then you come out here and you find somebody’s broken into a box and stolen a bunch of materials, you know, from your project that have been donated for free – that just makes me feel even worse,” Sawyer said, the Dayton Daily News reported.

Miller Construction contractor Carey Miller said, “The handle was open and, obviously, there was no lock on it, so you could tell someone had been in the container,” KIRO 7 reported.

The mission of Homes for Our Troops is to re-erect the lives of veterans who have sustained traumatic injuries while serving, according to their website.

Sawyer qualified for this program on several levels.

In April 2012, while Sawyer was stationed in Afghanistan, an IED exploded under him.

Sawyer said, “I lost both of my limbs, obviously. Both of my ear drums blew out, my left eardrum was 100 percent, my right eardrum was 25 percent. The blast threw me back. It gave me a traumatic brain injury because I hit my head so hard and it also gave me two bulging discs in my lower spine.”

Trying to recover and build a life has been more than difficult for Sawyer, and he was looking forward to having a home to call his own – now that project is on hold.

Authorities are looking for the thief or thieves.

Sawyer added, “I feel like I need to take some form of action, but what do I do? Homes for Our Troops is going to be a big part of my life that will allow me to even become a first-time home owner.”