Carrington House: Plans for the Future
It is a privilege to share an update on four Veterans who will be receiving a Carrington House home thanks to the generous support of our donors. For each, a future home provided by the Carrington Charitable Foundation through Carrington House will bring welcome stability for these American heroes and their families. Each of these men has his own unique story of service, loss, recovery and triumph. These are the stories of Michael Liscomb, of Exeter, ME; Matt Miles of San Antonio, TX, and Michael Jernigan of Virginia and Matthew Melancon of Utah.
U.S. Army Specialist Michael Liscomb
Michael Liscomb and his wife, Desiree, have completed the design process for their modular home, and construction currently is in progress. The land is pictured above. The storage sheds that were initially on the property have been demolished and removed. The trees have been removed; digging for the basement and foundation will begin at the end of October; and the home should be completed by the end of the year, so the couple with their children can enjoy a fresh start in a new home in a new year. The couple said the house brings a new sense of freedom in a new chapter.
Michael was born in Lewiston, Maine, on July 23, 1987. He joined the U.S. Army in August 2007, attending basic training at Fort Benning, GA, before being deployed to Nasiriyah, Iraq, on April 2008. While on deployment, he sustained injuries when his Humvee was hit by another vehicle. After months of treatment, he developed a bone infection and had to have his left leg amputated above the knee in 2016. Since that time, Michael has worked with the Travis Mills Foundation as an ambassador and a volunteer. A sled hockey player and outdoor sportsman, he enjoys hunting, fishing and golf. He refuses to view his injuries as an excuse or setback.
“I’m not a wounded Veteran anymore,” says Michael. “I’m a recalibrated Veteran who can tackle the world.”
Michael and Desiree have a daughter, Mackenzie, and a son, Grant, who mean the world to them. Michael is thankful for the support of his family and the Travis Mills Foundation, his “second family.”
“I am most excited to have a place that my family and I can call our home,” says Michael. “Since being out of the Army, I’ve slept on friends’ couches, and at my in-law’s house. The one thing that I am most excited about is having a home that’s ours, where I have no limitations and can live freely.”
U.S. Army Sergeant 1st Class Matthew Miles
The Miles family recently closed escrow on the land for their new home. They have been working with a home builder to finalize the floorplan, having just received their first set of plans for review. The couple was selecting finishes for their home at the time of this writing.
Matthew Miles was born in Painesville, Ohio, and graduated from Peoria High School in 1995, where he met his now-wife, Maria. After graduation, he attended college, but since he had always been drawn to the military, he enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1998 as an Airborne Combat Engineer. He went on to complete numerous deployments, including Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan. During his deployment in Afghanistan in 2007, Matthew was severely wounded when an improvised explosive device (IED) hit his vehicle. His injuries were widespread, including a fracture in his right ankle, a broken hyoid bone, partially torn retina, torn ligaments in both shoulders, a broken left hand and ultimately the loss of his left leg. After medically retiring from the military in 2011, Matthew graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Texas at San Antonio with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Real Estate Finance and Development.
“I’m excited to have a totally accessible home for Matt, as there are several rooms in our house he cannot get to easily when he’s in his wheelchair,” says Maria. “It’s difficult for him to get in and out of our house if he’s in his wheelchair, and being able to get into the entire house at all times will be wonderful!”
Matthew and Maria currently live in San Antonio, TX, with their three children. Matthew works in commercial real estate for a community bank.
Two More Veterans Join Carrington House
Additionally, CCF has accepted two additional Veterans into the Carrington House program, and their homes are in the pre-planning stages. Michael Jernigan of Virginia and Matthew Melancon of Utah both look forward to the oncoming planning and construction of their future Carrington House homes. Here are their stories.
U.S. Army Sergeant Matthew Melancon
Eager to serve his country, 18-year-old native of Cedar City, Utah, Matthew Melancon joined the U.S. Army. An IED hit his truck during a second deployment in the Middle East. Although he endured amputations of each leg, a life-threatening MRSA infection and many reconstruction surgeries, Matt does not use these setbacks as an excuse. Now an athlete and motivational speaker, Matt says he believes in the power of attitude and perspective. He blends the doctrines that kept him alive on the battlefield with the values and lessons taught by legacy civilian amputees who galvanized his belief in the human spirit.
U.S. Marine Corporal Michael Jernigan
In 2004, serving in the war on terror, U.S. Marine Corporal Michael Jernigan of Company E 2nd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment is first serviceman to lose his eyes and vision after being hit with 155 mm shells while on patrol, throwing him 20 meters from his Humvee. He suffered a head injury affecting 45 percent of his skull, with shrapnel entering one eye and exiting the other. Additionally, with a fractured patella and a damaged femoral artery, he had two fingers reconstructed, along with his left knee. Michael endured 30 complicated operations during more than a year in the hospital and rehab.
A Veteran of the year from his hometown of St. Petersburg, Michael co-founded Paws for Patriots at South Eastern Guide Dogs, which provides guide dogs and service animals to those who have served. In 2017, he received The Ross Perot Patriot Award for his service. Michael is the Vice President of the Blinded American Veterans Foundation, and a motivational speaker. He and his wife, KimberLee, recently relocated to Texas from Florida, where they actively volunteer to support Veterans.
The property for the home for the Miles family.