Fisher House Boston has given Sandra Thornton a soft place to land as she faces an uphill battle with her husband, John.
He broke his back this year.
"He broke a bone, and will be a paraplegic and wheelchair bound," said Sandra Thornton.
John, a former Army lieutenant, is being treated at Boston's VA Hospital, which is a lengthy drive from Augusta, Maine, the Thornton's are from.
“I would have come down perhaps once a week to visit for a couple hours and then travel back home and we would have communicated by phone,” said Sandra Thornton.
But with the official dedication of the Fisher House, a 20-suite complex on the VA grounds, Sandra now has this home away from home for free.
The Fisher House provides housing for the families of veterans and wounded military personnel at no cost for as long as their loved one is a patient.
"I get up, I can cook him an omelet, take him an omelet for breakfast or cook dinner here and take him dinner. It just made a big difference," said Sandra Thornton.
“These men and women have made these sacrifices. They've given limbs, they've given their sight. They've come back in some cases catastrophically wounded and having their families here helps them get through that," said Ken Fisher, the chairman of the Fisher House Foundation.
Members of the military come from all over the country for the Boston VA's renowned spinal cord injury unit and not only will they be assured the best doctors by their bedside, but their families as well.
“It's helped him cope a little bit better. He’s had the family support here and somebody that cares,” said Sandra Thornton.
A very small part of the house was paid for by a federal grant, but much of the $5.6 million price tag came from fundraising by people in Boston.
"Holidays, birthdays & anniversaries have been celebrated with tears and smiles with people who truly understand what the other person is experiencing."
- Kamryn Jaroszewski