DACULA, Ga. - A local Iraq War veteran says he no longer has to worry about where he'll raise his children.
On Tuesday, Adam Egli, his wife and three young children walked into their new Dacula home for the first time. They received the home mortgage-free courtesy of a Bank of America program to help military families.
The home gives the family a sense of comfort and security. They said their new house is also a big relief, "like a financial burden off of us,” said Adam Egli.
"I've been speechless forever,” said his wife, Danielle.
The young couple has struggled ever since the soldier returned from Iraq. During his 14-month deployment in Baghdad, he was seriously injured, suffering a concussion, a ruptured tendon in his thigh, a fractured kneecap and multiple shrapnel wounds. He needed four reconstructive surgeries and two additional procedures to clean out the shrapnel.
"It’s really hard for veterans to make it right now," Danielle Egli said.
She said help wasn't easy to come by.
“I was told we weren't eligible lots and lots of times, because I lived with my in-laws and wasn't living out of my car," she said.
At first, the Eglis stayed with relatives in Indiana, but disaster struck there.
“We lived there for three years and then, a tree fell on our house eight months ago. It fell on and through our house,” Danielle Egli said.
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They moved to Georgia to live with Adam Egli's parents. Around that time, his wife applied for a program for wounded veterans.
Bank of America works with the Military Warriors Support Foundation to place military families in a home mortgage-free.
"We want to put families in these homes that are deserving and keep that solid fabric in the community," said Mike Shriver with Bank of America.
The donation also rids the community of a foreclosed property.
The family waited two years. Finally, they got word the Dacula home was theirs.
"We can actually save money and bank money and not have to live month-to-month,” Adam Egli said.
His wife added, "Since he got out it’s been so rough and we're going to be like a normal family again.”