Daily Life of a Marine Mom

A Piece of My Heart is home from Iraq


Thursday, January 26, 2006

Many of you know MomInAmerica2 as a frequent visitor to your own blogs and a staunch supporter of our men and women in uniform. I found a recent article on her blog that deals with one of our injured vets and I want to help. There are many many Eddies out there returning from Iraq and needing our help, so write your congressman and let them know that we, as a country, NEED to take care of our injured Vets. For right now, I am going to find out where to contribute a small amount to help Eddie come home and pass this on to all of you out there in blogland and hope that the word gets out. I did receive some helpful info from one of my friends who knows several Marines. The following organization has grants available to help disabled Vets and soldiers, I am trying to get this info on to Eddie's family:

Contact Information:
National Council on Disability
1331 F Street, NW,
Suite 850
Washington, DC 20004

202-272-2004 Voice
202-272-2074 TTY

UPDATE: Got this info (in comments on MSN spaces) from MomInAmerica2, posting it here so it is visible:

HA! You found it! Okay... best way to get information and make donations to Eddie.... www.helpeddieryan.com Doesn't take a lot but it does take all of us! Thanks for the information! I'm also checking into some other resources for them as well. God bless and let's bring him home! A Mom in America

I did visit the above site where you can donate money to help Eddie Ryan come home. Its easy to make a donation especially if you have a PayPal account (which of course I do!). So hop over there and help this young man even if you can only donate a couple of dollars. Like Nae said in the comments here. It will only take 100,000 of us donating a dollar to enable this young man to continue to recuperate with his loving family! I added $10. It would only take 10,000 of us doing that!

On to the articles (there are 2 different ones) about Eddie, one of our unsung heros. The newspaper that printed these articles is based in Orange County, New York:

By Paul Brooks
Times Herald-Record

Ellenville - Not here. People here will not leave wounded Marine sniper Eddie Ryan with no home to go to.

A story in yesterday's Times Herald-Record reported that Ellenville native Eddie Ryan's home needs $90,000 to $100,000 worth of work to accommodate him once he's discharged from the hospital.

Ryan took one bullet to the brain and a second to the jaw while fighting in Iraq in April. Doctors expected him to die. He's still going, battling through rehabilitation, learning to walk again, improving his halting speech, recapturing his life.

Doctors at Helen Hayes Hospital in West Haverstraw told the Ryans he might be able to leave in six to eight weeks.

But his family's three-bedroom ranch outside Ellenville needs wider halls and a bigger bathroom. Eddie's dad, Chris, applied to ABC-TV's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" in hopes the show would do the work.

It's a long shot at best. And the government is offering only $10,000 to help.

But the family is not alone. Offers of help poured in yesterday from individuals, groups and businesses alike. More are expected. "I'm a carpenter," Gerard O'Donnell of New Windsor said. "I want to see what I can do to help the family out."

Johann Huleatt of the Bruderhof, a religious group with a number of communities in the region, said his organization wanted to help the family. A&E Advertising and Web Design in Monroe is donating a Web site that will be up and running soon. Lan Associates of Goshen offered its architectural and engineering services to the Ryans at no charge. "We want to donate to Eddie," said Colleen Murphy, office manager.

Others offered money. "I will make the first pledge. Five bucks," said Mickey Guarino in an e-mail.

The offers of help surprised Chris Ryan.

"That's beautiful. I can't believe it," he said. "This is Middle America. They work. They pay taxes and they are taking this burden on themselves to help a wounded warrior."

Here is why: "It could easily have been my family," said O'Donnell.

"I don't want anything in return. I just hope somebody would do the same thing if I were in the same situation."

Second Article from the Times-Herald REcord

Injured vet's battle
Quest for housing on wing and prayer

By Paul Brooks
Times Herald-Record

Ellenville - Wounded Marine sniper Sgt. Eddie Ryan will soon be ready to come home, but his home is not ready for him.

The Ellenville High School graduate was shot in the head in a friendly fire incident in Iraq April 13. The two bullets, one to the brain and one to the jaw, left Eddie seriously impaired. He speaks haltingly. He cannot walk on his own yet, though the family hopes that will eventually happen. He gets around in a wheelchair.

Doctors at Helen Hayes Rehabilitation Hospital in West Haverstraw tell the family that Eddie's stay there could end in as soon as six to eight weeks.

Eddie could go to a rehab facility with a lower level of care, but that won't happen.

"I made him a promise that from Helen Hayes, he was coming home," said his father, Chris Ryan. "That's what he wants to do."

But the hallway to Eddie's bedroom is too narrow for him and the wheelchair. The main bathroom in his family's 1,300-square-foot ranch-style home can't accommodate him, either. The living room can't hold Eddie, his mother, Angela, his dad and sister Felicia at the same time, Chris Ryan says.

A contractor who specializes in renovations for the disabled said the family needs an addition to the home on Wintish Road outside Ellenville. At $100 a square foot, the addition carries a price tag of $90,000 to $100,000.

That's a big hit on the family finances, and while the federal government will help out, Eddie is eligible for only $10,000 in aid at this point. The government says another $40,000 is reserved for Eddie's use later, Chris Ryan said.

With time slipping away, Chris Ryan took a gamble. He applied to ABC-TV's "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition." The show descends on a home with a large crew and does home renovations in just a week at no cost to the homeowner.

Eddie filled out an 18-page application and taped a video of the home and of the family at the hospital with Eddie. They submitted it Jan. 10.

"We are just hoping and praying this pans out because it will save us a lot of time and money," Chris Ryan said. "Time is of the essence."

A producer and casting director with the ABC show held out little hope for the Ryans.

"We get up to 15,000 applications each week," said Charisse Simonian. The show has already done three soldier stories, including the kickoff for this season.

"I am not saying we won't do it again," she said. "It just might be a while. "¦ It's kind of a wing and a prayer. I encourage everybody, please don't wait for us. "¦ Do your own Hudson Valley Extreme Makeover. You will be amazed."

Chris Ryan said he is looking at other options, but that there should be more government support for these wounded veterans.

"We are not only thinking about Eddie. There are nearly 20,000 wounded Marines and soldiers, and half cannot return to active duty," he said. "Things have got to change, not just for Eddie, but for all these kids giving their lives and their blood for their country. They are not getting taken care of."

Semper Fi and God Bless you all!

Comments: |
Hello again Ms. Tami,

If I gave you a jewel, as prescious as the life of a Marine, would you protect it and keep it safe with every resourse you had to ensure that it maintained the dignity it was entrusted to you with?

I hope you like my blog.
Hi Tami, I would say to just leave the link for now. I like the msn space and will just probably mirror it over on blogger except when Spaces does this stuff. Thanks for the help and if I see that the Spaces sites have to go down, I will be emailing you.

God bless!

A Mom in America
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