Donation made possible through partnerships with Bank of America and the National Community Stabilization Trust (NCST).
Myrtle Beach, SC. – On Wednesday, October 15th at 11:00 a.m. in Myrtle Beach, SC disabled Army veteran Aquariann Thompson and her family were given the keys to a newly-renovated, mortgage-free home through the HomeStrong’s Heroes program in partnership with Bank of America, who donated the property. While enduring many struggles and overcoming life-changing setbacks, Aquariann now has a permanent home to enjoy with her beautiful four children.
“We are truly humbled by Aquariann’s dedication to our Country and her family,” said Jed Davis, CEO of HomeStrong USA, a national non-profit community development organization. “Through her strength as a soldier and commitment to caring for those around her, Aquariann has set an example for her children and inspires all that meet her.”
While serving as a 63B10, Lightwheel Vehicle Mechanic in the U.S. Army, Aquariann was stationed in Hanau, Germany and Fort Hood, Texas. As one of only two female mechanics that she worked with, Aquariann overcame stigmas and thoroughly enjoyed the challenge.
Discharged from the Army in 1998, as a single mother, Aquariann cared for her two children and disabled grandmother who had lost both of her legs. While caring for her family and working full time, Aquariann attended the University of South Carolina where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice in 2002.
Now with four children, Aquariann suffers from epilepsy, leg and ankle conditions, degenerative disks in her lumbar spine and has a pacemaker for irregular heartbeats. Unable to work, the Thompson family’s income is very limited. Due to their current economic situation, the Thompsons were forced to live at a relative’s three bedroom house with four adults and eight children. Despite not having adequate space to live and study, Aquariann’s daughter Khailah, graduated high school at age 16 and enrolled in college at 17. Learning work ethic and valuable life lessons from her mother, Khaliah graduated college in October 2014.
The U.S. Army taught Aquariann lessons about “staying strong, having integrity and loyalty, while being a leader.” With these lessons in mind, Aquariann has always had a goal to own a home. “I have been praying and praying and praying for a home for my family before I turn 40,” said Aquariann Thompson.
Aquariann Thompson’s prayers were answered when she received the keys to her very own home on October 15th. Now, as the owner of a mortgage-free home, Aquariann and her family can look to the future and find comfort in knowing that their past struggles have led them to a house that they can finally call “home.”
To ensure long-term success as homeowners, the HomeStrong’s Heroes program will also provide the Thompson family with access to ongoing financial education and counseling from USA Cares Certified Military Housing Specialists.
All donations through the HomeStrong’s Heroes program are made possible by Bank of America.
As part of Bank of America’s efforts to help revitalize communities and support the housing needs of those who have served and sacrificed for our nation, the company has donated more than 1,500 homes nationwide to military veteran-support charities and other nonprofit, community-based organizations. This donation is made possible through a partnership HomeStrong USA, which works with financial institutions such as Bank of America. To learn more about Bank of America’s support of service members and veterans, visit bankofamerica.com/militarysupport.
“We are honored to support our military service members through the company’s property donation program,” said Robin Agnew, Myrtle Beach market president for Bank of America. “Our partnership with nonprofits that support the housing needs of military veterans is one of the best ways we can assist and thank those who have sacrificed for our country. It builds on our longstanding support of veterans across the country, and reflects Bank of America’s dedication to revitalizing communities.”
Another integral organization to the HomeStrong’s Heroes program is the National Community Stabilization Trust (NCST). Partnering with local non-profits, NCST assists with the acquisition and reuse of foreclosed properties, allowing organizations such as HomeStrong USA to rehabilitate the properties for veterans and dramatically improve the quality of life in local neighborhoods.
“Veterans that have served our country with valor and honor deserve to be welcomed back into our communities with safe, affordable, and accessible homes,” said Craig Nickerson, President of the National Community Stabilization Trust. “Our organization is proud to be working with local partners like HomeStrong that are creating special housing opportunities for veterans, military service members, and their families.”
To learn more about eligibility, program guidelines, or partnership opportunities, interested parties may call (877) 647-8764 or visit www.homestrongusa.org.