NEWS | April 24, 2017

Airmen, Sailors recognize Marine family’s sacrifice during Operation Finally Home ceremony

By Staff Sgt. Christopher Hubenthal Joint Base Charleston Public Affairs

Operation Finally Home, a national non-profit organization, worked with various partners to begin construction of a custom-built, mortgage-free home tailored to meet the needs of U.S. Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Jeremy Brooking, a wounded warrior. Brooking and his family, service members and coordinators celebrated the event during a ceremony here, April 22, 2017.

Brooking is a wounded warrior who was injured during a deployment to Iraq in 2007. Only two months into his tour he was shot in the chest by a sniper and had to have a piece of his lung removed during treatment, leaving him with permanent nerve damage.

Airmen and Sailors assigned to Joint Base Charleston gathered at the Carnes Crossroads community in support of the Marine and his family.

“We’re all military so we have a duty to support each other and this is just one avenue in which we can do that,” said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Christopher Hughes, Joint Base Charleston Airman Leadership School commandant. “I think it’s important to recognize we could very well be in the same position he is in. It’s very important we come out and support families like this because there may be a time when we need the same support.”

Retired U.S. Army Maj. Gen. Gerald Minetti provided the keynote address during the ceremony and said that events like these give him the opportunity to pay it forward after everything he has received during his nearly 42-year career.

“It was really a highlight for sure,” said Minetti. “It is good to see a veteran like this not only be recognized but also to be provided something that is going to be so lasting for him and his family.”

Brooking and his family participated in the ground breaking event by digging into the dirt alongside representatives of Operation Finally Home and other organizations that made the occasion possible.

“It was truly a humbling and welcoming experience,” said Brooking. “It’s something our family will never forget. They’re there to step up for me and my family and words can’t describe how much that means. Without the men and women who have gone before us this would not be possible. I praise them and thank them for their service.”