The Morrises, who currently reside in Amory, Miss., received the three bedroom house on Langston Road mortgage-free through a partnership between Bank of America and Military Warriors Support Foundation.
Morris is a Purple Heart recipient. He served in the Army for 13 years before being injured in a car bomb attack near Abu Ghraib prison in April 2005.
“Stuff like this makes all the pain and suffering worth it. It shows how much people love their soldiers,” Morris said.
Bank of America has pledged to donate up to 1,000 homes to military families and first responders, according to the company website. Nine of the homes donated have been in Alabama.
The program is also designed to help revitalize the communities where the properties, which frequently have gone into foreclosure, are located.
“It’s an honor and a privilege for Bank of America to help support our veterans. We were just talking about Alabama and Mississippi State football. A lot of people celebrate those guys as heroes, but you all are true heroes,” said Bank of America representative Ken Price, who is also a veteran.
Morris, a 37-year-old Sulligent native, was in a coma for two weeks after surviving two car bombs and small arms fire. He almost died from a large piece of shrapenel that became lodged in his throat.
Morris spent 19 months in a military medical center in San Antonio.
It took two years of rehab for him to learn how to walk again and perform routine tasks such as feeding himself.
The gunner who was accompanying Morris the day of the attack fared worse than he did.
He was in a coma for six months and was permanently blinded.
“It’s almost nine years later, and we’ve moved on. We’ll never be the same people we were before we went, but we deal with life,” Morris said.
For Morris, part of his new life was a remarriage. He and his wife have been together for one year.
The couple have been living in a home that belonged to Emily’s grandmother.
The Army’s wounded warrior advocate in Mississippi told Morris about the Home4WoundedHeroes program offered by the Military Warriors Support Foundation.
One of the available homes was in Carbon Hill, approximately an hour’s drive from Amory, Miss.
“We fell in love with the pictures before we had even seen the house,” Morris said.
While the application process was still ongoing, the Morrises drove to Carbon Hill in hopes of finding the property. They were unable to locate it because they were not allowed to know the address until they were named as recipients.
That trip was fruitful in another way, however. A Good Samaritan who lives in the area offered to take Morris on a hunting trip he organizes each year for veterans.
The couple made the drive from Amory to Carbon Hill again once they learned that they were homeowners.
Their new home sits on three acres and has a pond in the front yard.
“As soon as we pulled in the driveway, we were sold. Although Amory’s not that big, we do live in the city. We loved the scenery here,” Morris said.
The three bedrooms will come in handy as well.
“We found out a couple of months ago that we are expecting our first child. I already have a daughter. This is definitely a blessing,” Morris said.