Military support programs pay it back in a big way - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Military support programs pay it back in a big way

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NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) -

At a time when Iraq is in upheaval and VA hospital problems are rampant, some Iraqi war veterans are getting a big helping hand.

A military support organization has teamed up with a mortgage company to give homes to wounded veterans who need the help.

It's like Christmas in June.

"This is a lot bigger than we expected," said former Marine Officer Sean Fairburn.

He was on the front lines for three military offensives, and now  Fairburn is getting some payback for paying the price.

The Military Warrior Support Foundation teamed up with Wells Fargo to give the Fairburn family of seven a 4-bedroom home. the home is north of Slidell and mortgage free.

"The timing of the home was nothing short of a miracle," said Amy Fairburn.

"Its an amazing blessing knowing that my family is secure," Sean added.

He is isn't the only wounded warrior to get a boost.

"I have a chance now," said Julie Barchiers, who got a home last year. The 20-year Army and Navy veteran has been recovering from an enemy attack.

"We had some rockets come in, and the concussion of one slammed into the back of my head," Barchiers said.

Both of the home recipients FOX 8 spoke with are Iraqi war veterans and have some definite thoughts about the recent problems there.'

"I think we need to stay out of it. They've been at war since time began, we're not going to make a difference. We proved that," said Barchiers

Sean Fairburn was a war photographer who won an Emmy covering the early stages of the Iraq war. He's not surprised that religious factions are fighting once more.

"We knew it was not ever in the cards, but because it's difficult is no reason not to help people," said Fairburn.

The war was one thing. The VA hospital system is another.

"In Atlanta, oh yeah, the VA system in Atlanta was beyond words," said Barchiers. She says the local VA has offered far more help. "The VA system here is outstanding," she said.

Though they paid a price for their sacrifice, they still believe it was worth it.

"You can't predict the happy ending, and just because you can't, that's no reason not to help them," said Fairburn.

Now, both families are getting a huge emotional and financial boost, knowing they will never have to pay a mortgage.

"It's really nice. I like the place, it's a free house," said 17-year-old Caleb Fairburn as he sized up his new room.

And after three wars and five moves, the Fairburn family knows they are finally home.

The Military Warriors Support Program is a non profit that helps wounded veterans transition into civilian life.

In addition to the home, the families get three years of family and financial mentoring.

So far, they've been involved in donating homes to 120 veterans.

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