Disabled veteran gets garden and custom built ramp

9:01 PM, Jun 20, 2012   |    comments
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 PDF Document: Help Desk Veteran Resources

JASPER, Ga. -- Cynthia Koehler, a 14 year U.S. Air Force veteran, is confined to a wheelchair.

Koehler's house doesn't have a ramp so she hasn't been able to get out her front door. Everyday, she has to maneuver through the house and out the garage just to get outside to retrieve her mail.

The 11Alive Help Desk got an email from her Koehler son, a U.S. Marine, asking for assistance and the Help Desk went to work to help her. 

The 11Alive Help Desk contacted Home Depot and their partner Vets Help Vets. And it didn't take long to get a response. 

In three days, 24 Team Home Depot and Vets Help Vets volunteers went to work building a first-class ramp and planting a garden in Koehler's yard. 

When Ms. Koehler rolled out the front door --- a whole new world opened up to her.

Going up and down that ramp added a new dimension to her life in the mountains of Jasper.

She was overwhelmed.

"I am now able to get out my front door now," she said.

"It's unbelievable."

"You try to find somebody to help you and you lose all hope and then all of a sudden somebody steps up," she said.

"I was just living with what I was given, with the woods and all that and they gave me a beautiful garden as well. All of this is beyond expectations," Koehler said.

If you are a veteran, you will find a comprehensive list of resources you can access for assistance attached.   

The list includes a 24-hour hot line for crisis counseling, a website that offers assistance with education and training programs, another for help with housing and one designed to assist veterans with disabilities. 

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