Local veteran gifted with new home in Vero Beach

Former Army Vet gets new home.

VERO BEACH — An injured army veteran and his daughter were recently given a new mortgage-free home with special modifications.

One of those modifications is grab bars that were installed in the bathtubs and showers in the bathrooms at the home to help former U.S. Army Cpl. Andres Rosa, who has back injuries, said Building Homes for Heroes spokeswoman Kim Valdyke.

“Those are to help him get up and down,” Valdyke said.

Andres Rosa and his daughter Luiza Rosa were greeted by about 30 people during a ceremony 11 a.m. July 19 at the new home on 16th Court Southwest. People cheered as the father and daughter walked through the single family residence.

“It’s beautiful. I couldn’t ask for anything more,” said Rosa, 39.

U.S. Army Vet Andres Rosa Jr. and his family were given a new mortgage-free home Wednesday July 19, 2017, in #VeroBeach by Building Homes for Heroes.

Posted by Nick Samuel on Wednesday, July 19, 2017

The approximately 1,950 square-foot house has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, kitchen, living room, laundry room, small backyard and a patio with a inground pool, Valdyke said.

Rosa enlisted in the army in 1999, was discharged in 2010 and served for his country for more than a decade, according to Rosa and Building Homes for Heroes. During a mission in Afghanistan, Rosa was injured when his vehicle slipped off a ravine and rolled over numerous times.

He now suffers from a variety of conditions such as lumbar intervertebral disc syndrome, fibromyalgia, sleep apnea, a traumatic brain injury, hearing loss and severe PTSD.

The smoothing sound from the waterfall installed in the inground pool helps people with PTSD stay calm, Valdyke said.

Building Homes for Heroes in partnership with JP Morgan Chase & Co. hosted the event. Building Homes for Heroes is a national nonprofit organization that builds and modifies homes to give mortgage-free to wounded veterans and their families.

The nonprofit has more than 6,000 applicants for new homes, Valdyke said. Rosa applied a year and a half ago for the home, which is valued between $200,000 and $250,000 in the quiet, tree-lined neighborhood.

“He handpicked this home and has friends in the area,” Valdyke said. “This is the only home (from the nonprofit) in Indian River County.”

Valdyke said Chase Bank donated the home to the nonprofit.

“They take their foreclosures and give them to us,” Valdyke said. “We renovated it with granite counter tops, fixtures in the bathroom and more.”

Luiza, 12, got on her knees to look at her bed in her new room. “I love it. Thank you,” she said.

Andres Rosa’s mother, Ana Rosa, 60, and grandmother, Islvea Rodriguez, 82, both of Jacksonville, also were in attendance.

“There’s no words. I’m happy for him,” Ana Rosa said.




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