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U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Donald Davenport began his military career at the age of 34 years old. He had always wanted to serve his country, not only for his children, but also for his father who was an Army Veteran. After his business was hit hard in the recession in 2002, Davenport pursued his dream and began his Army career as the oldest recruit in basic training at Fort Knox, Ky., in 2011.
His unit was deployed to Afghanistan in January 2011. Four months later while on patrol, his unit came under attack from insurgents and his mentor died in his arms.
That same year, Davenport suffered a TBI (traumatic brain injury) when he was thrown inside the cab of a truck due to an explosion. Less than a month later, he was involved in seven additional close-range blasts causing headaches and nightmares.
He returned to the United States in December 2011, to attend his father’s military funeral, and while at home, four more soldiers in his unit lost their lives. Dealing with the death of his father along with four comrades, his headaches became more frequent and he received treatment. Davenport reenlisted in 2012 and graduated from Air Assault School at Fort Campbell, in honor of his fallen mentor. He became an instructor at Sabulaski Air Assault School the following year.
In 2015, he was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in addition to traumatic brain injuries. Davenport had shoulder surgery in 2016 and has limited use of his right arm.
Davenport received numerous awards for his service, including a Purple Heart, Operation Enduring Freedom Campaign Medal, Army Achievement Medal, NATO Medal and more.
He and his wife, Michaela, moved back to the Loganville, Ga., area in 2015 to be closer to family, including their two grown daughters and three grandchildren.
Operation FINALLY HOME, along with McKinney & Son Builders and GLOCK, are thrilled to build the Davenport family a custom, mortgage-free home in Newnan, Ga., in 2017.