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House Finished For Family Of Disabled Veteran

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Stock Photo (William Thomas Cain/ Getty Images)

Stock Photo (William Thomas Cain/ Getty Images)

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UPDATED: 6/29/2011 6:00 p.m.

HILLSIDE, Ill. (CBS) — He lost both of his legs below the knee serving his country. Now, a retired army specialist now living in Hillside is being honored with a newly built wheelchair accessible home and no mortgage payment.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports, 330 workers donated their time, and 86 companies donated materials and surfaces.

Now, Sergio Lopez, his wife Maria and their two young daughters have their new house.

Five years ago, an improvised explosive device so severely injured Army Spc. Lopez that he lost both his legs below his knees.

“The explosive went off, pretty much, right underneath my feet,” Lopez told CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot.

His new house is fully wheelchair accessible for the times when he’s too tired to stand on his prosthetic legs. The kitchen sink is designed to allow him to roll his wheelchair right under the counter.

“This is definitely going to make my life a lot easier,” Lopez said. “It’s going to allow me to pitch in and help out around the house.”

“We will always be grateful for what happened here and we’re going to take really good care of this house and we’re gonna be here for a long, long, long time and they’re work is definitely appreciated.”

Plote Construction spearheaded the three-month house-building effort.

“It was a collaboration, not only with the skilled workers, but the manufacturers, the municipalities, it was a group effort,” said Anthony Janowski, Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters.

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