Supporting the housing needs of America's veterans

Nov 08, 2013

As thousands of troops return home from deployment overseas, many need help as they transition into civilian life. Bank of America has proudly supported members of the military since 1920 and is committed to addressing the housing needs for service members and first responders. In fact, by the end of 2013, the bank will have donated nearly 1,000 homes to military families and first responders across the country through donations to nonprofit organizations and local government programs that provide homes for injured military veterans and first responders.

In conjunction with the bank’s “Express Your Thanks” program for the 2012 Bank of America 500 to honor and support America’s service members and veterans, the bank donated one such home to retired Army Staff Sergeant Ben Dellinger, who was wounded while on patrol in Afghanistan.

Bank of America donated a two-story, four-bedroom home in Charlotte through its partnership with Military Warriors Support Foundation (MWSF), which provides homes to service members critically injured in Iraq and Afghanistan. The donation reflects the bank’s efforts to help revitalize communities and support the housing needs of those who have served and sacrificed for our nation, and those who serve our communities.

As part of the home donation, dozens of Bank of America volunteers helped Sgt. Dellinger and his fiancée, Katie Swedensky, with their move. On two separate days, bank employees put the finishing touches on yard work, cleaned out the garage, painted the interior, power washed the deck, and installed new blinds and ceiling fans.

Bank employees have helped veterans like Sgt. Dellinger throughout North Carolina. In 2012 alone, local Bank of America employees volunteered more than 192,000 hours of their time to nonprofits that support veterans and other community-based organizations to make a difference throughout the state. 

“I know there are a lot of other veterans who deserve the same thing. So many of us got our lives totally changed or, for some, taken away in an instant. I feel like I got something back,” said retired Sgt. Dellinger. “This home gives me a sense of stability and normalcy, and I’ll never have to worry about my son having a place to live – which is the best feeling a parent can possibly have.” 

The home donation, and related volunteerism, was just one way the bank thanked Sgt. Dellinger for his service as part of its “Express Your Thanks” program. The bank also surprised Sgt. Dellinger by naming him the honorary green flag starter for the 2012 Bank of America 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race at Charlotte Motor Speedway. As honored guests, Sgt. Dellinger and his family participated in the official NASCAR driver’s meeting, were introduced onstage at a pre-race ceremony and viewed the race from the comfort of the Champions Pavilion.

“Bank of America has been dedicated to helping members of the military transition back into civilian life. The need is more intense at this time, as thousands of veterans return home from Iraq and Afghanistan,” said North Carolina and Charlotte Market President Charles Bowman. “We are honored to provide homeownership opportunities for injured military veterans and others who have given so much to our nation and communities.”

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