PulteGroup Employees Surprise U.S. Army Veteran and Family in Arizona with Promise of a New Mortgage-Free Home Through Built to Honor® Program
PulteGroup continues to celebrate a decade of delivering homes to wounded veterans
Invited to attend what they thought would be a routine veteran appreciation event at the ballpark, U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Christopher Liby and his family had no idea what they were about to experience: Hundreds of PulteGroup employees and supporters waiting to surprise them with the big reveal that they will receive a new, mortgage-free Pulte home through PulteGroup’s Built to Honor® program.
Staff Sergeant Liby becomes the latest veteran to receive a home through PulteGroup’s Built to Honor program, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Built to Honor recognizes and thanks returning military personnel who were injured during their term of service. Staff Sergeant Liby was awarded the Purple Heart after a 2008 improvised explosive device (IED) attack in Afghanistan, recognizing his efforts to assist fellow soldiers who were wounded by the explosion despite sustaining significant injuries of his own.
The surprise announcement came before an Arizona Diamondbacks game in June, where approximately 200 PulteGroup Arizona division employees, their family members and other guests gathered for what they originally said was an appreciation event for veterans. The crowd called out “surprise!” as the family walked into a suite at the ballpark where PulteGroup Arizona Division President Rebecca Lundberg and Division Director of Land Acquisition John Davison greeted the family and made the formal announcement that they had been chosen to receive a new home.
“Surprising Staff Sergeant Liby and his family with the life-changing promise of a new home was one of the highlights of the year for our team,” Lundberg said. “Building incredible homes is what we do every day, and everyone in our division is so honored by the chance to do that for one of our nation’s heroes and his family. And we know they’ll absolutely love being a part of their new Pulte Homes community.”
Staff Sergeant Liby, his wife Christina and their three children will become part of the community at Vail Parke at Rocking K – a Pulte Homes community in Tucson. The new four-bedroom home will be ready in early 2024. Located in the foothills of the scenic Rincon Mountains, the community features amenities for the Liby family to enjoy, including desert walking trails, a park, splash pad, large playground area, ramada, soccer field, basketball court and pickleball courts.
PulteGroup has awarded the home in partnership with Building Homes for Heroes®, a national non-profit organization devoted to bringing renewed hope and service to injured veterans. This will be the fourth Built to Honor home dedicated in Arizona.
U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Christopher Liby
Staff Sergeant Liby joined the military coming out of high school in December 1997, serving in the U.S. Marine Corps until December 2001 and joining the Army in 2002.
While on patrol in Afghanistan in 2008, Staff Sergeant Liby and his unit were clearing an area of IEDs when one exploded under their Humvee. An armored door blew off the vehicle and hit Staff Sergeant Liby in the head, crushing in his helmet and knocking him unconscious. The blast threw him nearly 150 meters, injuring his neck and back. After he regained consciousness a few moments later, he saw the Humvee upside-down and burning, and ran to help the soldiers inside despite his own wounds and continued flying shrapnel from secondary explosions. He and a fellow soldier continued to administer aid until a medical helicopter arrived. Staff Sergeant Liby sustained smoke burns in his lungs, his neck and back were injured, and he had shrapnel wounds in his neck, face and arms.
Three months later, he began experiencing severe spasms in his left arm. Further testing determined that he sustained permanent nerve damage to his left arm, a traumatic brain injury, carpal tunnel, and fractures to his neck and lower back which turned into degenerative disc disease. He was placed at a desk job for the remainder of the deployment and was medically discharged in October 2012.
Since medically retiring, Staff Sergeant Liby has been working to help others, including a local rancher. His dream is to open a ranch for veterans, first responders and their families, and families of the fallen.
For his service, Staff Sergeant Liby has been awarded the Purple Heart, Iraq Campaign Medal W/ Four Campaign Stars, USN/USMC Medal, Army Commendation Medal (5th Award), Meritorious Unit Commendation, Army Good Conduct Medal (3rd Award), National Defense A Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal W/ Two Campaign Stars, and several other military accolades.
About Built to Honor®
For the last decade, PulteGroup’s Built to Honor® program has recognized and thanked returning military personnel who have been injured during their term of service by providing mortgage-free homes to veterans and their families. Launched in 2013, the program has built and donated over 80 homes, gifting more than $35 million in value, across the country. Built to Honor works in partnership with nonprofit organizations to identify veteran candidates. For more information about Built to Honor, go to builttohonor.org. Follow Built to Honor on Twitter: @BuiltToHonor and Facebook.com/BuiltToHonor.
PulteGroup, Inc. (NYSE: PHM), based in Atlanta, Georgia, is one of America’s largest homebuilding companies with operations in more than 40 markets throughout the country. Through its brand portfolio that includes Centex, Pulte Homes, Del Webb, DiVosta Homes, American West and John Wieland Homes and Neighborhoods, the company is one of the industry’s most versatile homebuilders able to meet the needs of multiple buyer groups and respond to changing consumer demand. PulteGroup’s purpose is building incredible places where people can live their dreams.
For more information about PulteGroup, Inc. and PulteGroup brands, go to pultegroup.com; pulte.com; centex.com; delwebb.com; divosta.com; jwhomes.com; and americanwesthomes.com. Follow PulteGroup, Inc. on Twitter: @PulteGroupNews.