Veterans Day: Veterans United gives 11 homes to 11 deserving service members

Veterans United donates 11 homes to 11 deserving veterans

Veterans United Home Loans, a Missouri-based mortgage lender and the nation’s largest VA loans provider, on Wednesday announced its donation of 11 homes to 11 deserving U.S. veterans.

Veterans United Home Loans, a Missouri-based mortgage lender and the nation’s largest Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loans provider, on Wednesday announced its donation of 11 homes to 11 deserving U.S. veterans.

Veterans United teamed up with Marine veteran and comedian Rob Riggle to select 10 veterans making a difference in their communities for 10 home giveaways and is donating one more to any veteran who enters for a chance to win at ThanksToVeterans.com.

Pam Swan, vice president of military relations for Veterans United Home Loans and a military spouse, got involved in efforts to support service members after getting married in 1987 and becoming aware of what “military families are lacking” and joined Veterans United in 2011.

Jim L. (Veterans United Home Loans)

“We as a company work on improving the lives of service members, their families and their communities, and that is the core of every decision we make,” Swan said. “…Last year, we made a big statement in trying to say thank you on Veterans Day in a more spectacular way.”

She added that the reasons why service members join the military is what makes them such valuable members of a community, so Veterans United this year decided to donate 11 homes to 11 veterans who “give back to their communities” on 11/11 to say thank you to those who have served as part of its #ThanksToVeterans campaign.

The donations were a complete surprise to those selected, who were all in the process of applying for home loans and were just recently approved.

Andre H. (Veterans United Home Loans)

Jonathon Brown is one such Army veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. Brown is now the single law enforcement officer in his small Wisconsin town of 800 people and previously lived in a three-bedroom rental with seven children under 17 between him and his wife.

Brown, while applying for a home loan, was selected to take part in a series of interviews for what he was told would be a documentary series about veterans who give back to their communities. He had no idea about the free house that would come afterward.

Jonathon Brown (Veterans United Home Loans)

“I thought, ‘That’s cool,'” he said of the documentary series. “…During the process of that, they surprised us while we were having breakfast with this bombshell announcement and it just blew us away. I could not believe it.”

“It was a huge surprise — like, I did not see this coming at all,” he said.

Jonathon Brown and his children (Veterans United Home Loans)

Brown said he and his wife were looking to buy a home, and at one point, the representative they were working with put their names in a pool of applicants for the giveaway.

COMMEMORATING A CENTURY OF HONOR AT TOMB OF THE UNKNOWN SOLDIER 

The Army veteran compared being the lone law enforcement officer in his town to “going back to the Wild West days” and “keeping the peace as best as you can.”

Jonathon Brown (Veterans United Home Loans)

Other recipients include eight-year U.S. Navy veteran and single dad Andre H. from North Carolina; Vietnam Army vet Jim L. from New Mexico, who needed a wheelchair-accessible home; U.S. Army veteran and father of three Daniel G. from New York; U.S. Navy veteran, widow and mother of three Regina L. from Georgia; and Marine Corps veteran Iraq vet Samuel T. from California, who teaches local self-defense classes.

Swan said the “thing that stood out most” among the veterans she and her colleagues selected to take part in this giveaway was “their service back to their communities.”

Jim L. (Veterans United Home Loans)

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“We had them from every stage of picking up issues ranging from food scarcity to economic mobility to involvement with athletes…in their respective communities,” she explained. “…If you look at statistics, there are a lot of veterans who…want to give back and want to have that teamwork involvement, so we looked for those aspects. We look for people that did know what they wanted in a home loan or a home purchase.”

Any veteran can enter to win the 11th home giveaway at ThanksToVeterans.com.

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