Louisiana veteran gets a mortgage free home

HARVEY, La. -  Homes for Heros gifted army specialist Reginald McGibbon a mortgage free house on Wednesday.

McGibbon joined the military in February of 2000 out of New Orleans because he said he wanted to provide a better life for his family while serving the country that he loves. He was honorably discharged in 2005.

Over his five years of deployment, Specialist McGibbon sustained many physical injuries. He had also witnessed many atrocities that caused psychological trauma, which has made for a very difficult transition to civilian life.

The years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq have brought PTSD among military personnel to the attention of the American people as never before. Blast waves from explosions rattle the brain and can cause traumatic brain injuries which are often linked to PTSD. Most PTSD sufferers repeatedly relive the trauma in their thoughts during the day and in nightmares when they sleep. While the condition varies from person to person, more and more studies have linked PTSD with chronic depression and suicidal ideation.

For his years of service, Specialist McGibbon has been awarded the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, War on terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Kosovo Campaign Medal, War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon and the NATO Medal.

"When you go from paying rent to not having to worry about it, the possibilities of what you can do, and how you can grow and be successful for your family is endless," said McGibbon.