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The Benson Family

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Bartow, FL

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U.S. Army First Lieutenant Eric Benson

Benson bravely served in the United States Armed Forces through injuries and milestones, never wavering in his devotion to country and his family. 

Serving as a cadet in 2000, Benson suffered severe hip and back injuries, as well as a broken jaw, after a traumatic airborne training incident. Due to volatile winds, which resulted in a parachute malfunction, Benson was knocked unconscious with reverberating pain. He pushed through the pain to earn his jump wings without receiving appropriate medical care.

In 2003, while deployed to Iraq, he was spared by a vehicle explosion by only 100 yards. The bombs that detonated inside the vehicle leveled a police building and caused Benson to experience an “altered consciousness” coupled with a traumatic brain injury (TBI).

Benson’s unwavering service earned him an Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and an Iraq Campaign Medal, among other accolades.

Due to medical complications, Benson was honorably discharged in 2007. He continues to experience health complications resulting in the use of a wheelchair almost exclusively and has been told his condition will only continue to deteriorate.

The Bensons have come to the realization “this is life,” and they’ve decided to live it to the fullest. Benson’s wife, Caira, worked until she was called to transition to care for her husband full-time, and now volunteers with nonprofits and community military organizations. The couple’s hardships have compelled them to take on advocacy roles for veterans and caregivers. The pair currently live in Florida with their five children, and enjoy fishing, hunting, kayaking, camping and horseback riding as a family.

Operation FINALLY HOME along with Lennar are thrilled to provide the Benson family with a brand new, mortgage-free home in Orlando, Florida.

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