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Gardnerville general contractor Lance Jackson, who had built Gray's home in Smith Valley, also served as the contractor for Hall's home. Dozens of Nevada groups, including the Builders Association of Northern Nevada and Blue Star Mothers, contributed time, Converse High Tops Blue
He, his wife, Kelly, and their children, Connor, Alexis and Dakota, received the keys to their new home in October 2011.
"I just said to myself, 'OK, how am I going to do all the things I've always been able to do? How can I change what I used to do to what I'm doing now?'" he said.
"I really love Tim's spirit," Hall said. "We have a lot of the same interests. He's a fine example of a man who's not going to let anything get him down."
Like Hall, Gray was Converse Fashion Shoes
of it spent in the hospital and outpatient care and more than 60 surgeries later, he's closer than ever to doing so.
an avid outdoorsman and off road vehicle enthusiast who was determined to do all the things he did prior to his injury. He also was the first recipient of a home from Home For Our Troops.
He'd been there and done that more than once.
The home was constructed to accommodate a resident in a wheelchair. The doorways are wider. The floors are hardwood or tile. The appliances, such as the microwave, are at a level to be operated by a person in a wheelchair. Counters allow for a wheelchair to go under them instead of against them. The cabinets have drop down racks to allow easy access.
Homes For Our Troops has built 127 projects for severely disabled military personnel in the past few years. It knows what works.
"I asked Homes For Our Troops when they would be able to do a home for Tim, and they said, 'We'll put him on the (waiting) list. We've got Converse Metallic Pink to raise the money,'" Di Loreto said. "I said, 'No. Tim Hall is from Nevada. We'll raise the money in Nevada. In fact, you've got the money.' I kind of stuck my neck out a little bit."
Timothy Hall never gave a thought to dying when he awoke in Walter Reed National Military Medical Center with his legs gone from a mortar blast in Afghanistan.
Growing up in Hawthorne, he liked to ride motorcycles, drive dune buggies, fish and ski. He played football for the Mineral County High Serpents. He also played on the golf team, finishing high on the leaderboard at the state championships his senior year.
Gray was on his third deployment in Iraq in February 2007, when the Humvee in which he was riding hit an anti tank mine. The blast ripped through the bottom of the vehicle, and he lost the lower part of both legs.
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"It means the world," he said. "Once you've been in a wheelchair, you realize the different obstacles there are in a typical home that we typically never think about. Just the first step coming into your home is an obstacle for you when you're in a wheelchair."
Marine Sgt. Dylan Gray of Smith Valley knows firsthand what challenges awaited Hall.
labor and money to the project.
"He wanted to do a little motocross racing for a while," Hamrey said. "He liked to do that. That was two wheels; now, he's got four wheels with his Razor and a little off road truck he drives. Hawthorne is the perfect place. There are a lot of dirt roads everywhere. It's pretty wide open. It's great for what he loves to do."
And he smiled.
Initially treated at Bagram Air Base, he was airlifted to Landstuhl, Germany, where he spent nearly a week being stabilized for transfer to Walter Reed on June 18, 2010.
Hall's first thought at Walter Reed was about living a normal life.
"This is the home where Tim can start his future, build a family and get on with his life," said Dawn Texiera, executive director of Homes For Our Troops, a national nonprofit that provides for severely disabled service members.
Last week, the 22 year old Hall moved into his own specially adapted home in Hawthorne. He strapped himself into his Polaris Ranger off road vehicle and took a couple of visitors on a high speed thrill ride on the Nevada backroads that stretch in the distance to the west of his house.
"Just the whole doctor chain that I had, it was really lucky to have the doctors I had," he said. "I just progressively kept getting better."
"The helicopter flight from the base I was at, they lost me three times," said Hall, an Army specialist at the time of his injury. "But they didn't give up the whole time."
The immediate access to dirt roads was part of the appeal of the home site for Hall.
Help from Homes For Our TroopsIt was at Gray's key ceremony when Perry Di Loreto, president of the Nevada Military Support Alliance, approached Homes For Our Troops founder and president John Gonsalves to make him aware of Hall, who had been wounded a few months earlier.
The NMSA, a privately funded nonprofit, exists solely to support Nevada's men and women in the armed forces, their families and veterans. It agreed to cover all expenses for building Hall's new home.
Hawthorne soldier starts new life in a new home
Gray said Hall's attitude and determination has impressed him the most.
Adapting to lifeEric Hamrey, Hall's stepfather since he was 2, said the only difference in his son's passions since the injury is he's had to switch from two wheels to four for some of his off road pursuits.
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