Ground was broken on March 31, 2012 to mark the beginning of a major renovation of the home of USMC Captain James Byler in Huntington, Long Island. The home will meet the many needs of First Lieutenant Byler, who lost both of his legs above the knee, and also lost both pinky fingers when he stepped on an IED while leading his platoon in Afghanistan. The $250,000 home renovation has been made possible through donations and sponsorships secured by Building Homes for Heroes, in partnership with the office of Town of Huntington Councilman Mark Mayoka, and numerous contractors and vendors.
U.S. Marine First Lieutenant James Byler, an infantry platoon leader with the Third Battalion, 5th Marines, Camp Pendleton, California, was injured when he stepped on an improvised explosive device (IED). While leading his platoon on a dismounted patrol of a narrow alley in Northern Helmand Province, one of the deadliest provinces in Afghanistan, Captain Byler stepped backward on an IED that was buried in the dirt. He remained conscious until he was anesthetized in the Medevac chopper. The superior training his men received enabled them to stabilize him and save his life.
On November 12, 2011, USMC Sergeant Greg Caron was on patrol in the Southern Marjah area of Afghanistan searching known Taliban compounds. Sergeant Caron was severely wounded when an IED exploded. He lost both legs, immediately, and received a critical wound to the brachial artery of his right arm. Sergeant Caron was evacuated to Camp Dwyer where his situation turned for the worse. Once arriving at Dwyer, Sergeant Caron became unstable due to blood loss. He underwent emergency surgery to stabilize him, and to attempt to save his right arm.
Advance Auto Parts presented Building Homes for Heroes with a ceremonial announced donation in the amount of $475,000 at the inaugural Advance Auto Parts Charity Challenge Pro-Am on August 27, 2012. It is the largest single dollar donation received by Building Homes for Heroes since the charity's inception. The event was held at the historic Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Virginia.
Building Homes for Heroes Inaugural Casino & Cigar Night took place on Thursday, June 30th at Battery Gardens Restaurant in New York City. The event, which raised over $30,000 to benefit the severely wounded men and women of the military, was held on a picture-perfect evening that included a cocktail hour, buffet, DJ, cigars (donated by Camacho Cigars), and fabulous prizes. Approximately 140 people attended the event including television/movie celebrities Tony Sirico, Dominic Chianese, and Tony LoBianco, and former NHL great Ken Daneyko.