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First responders build home for double-amputee veteran

More than 100 firefighters from 14 states are pitching in to build the home in just about two weeks.

LICKING COUNTY, Ohio — When 9/11 happened, Melroy Cort knew he wanted to fight for his country.

He served one tour of duty and lost both his legs when an improvised explosive device detonated.

Credit: Melroy Cort

“I felt like I needed to take the blame for what happened to me and embrace the injury,” Cort said.

If that injury wasn't enough to survive, two years ago, Cort's home burned down because of an electrical fire. 

Cort, his wife Samantha, and their now 10 children have been living in temporary housing since.

Now, they are getting a new home.

More than 100 firefighters from 14 states are pitching in to build the home in just about two weeks.

“Someone you never met would care this much about you and your family to do this. All these people are taking up their time to do this,” Samantha said.

Several non-profits like the Tunnels to Towers, A Soldier's Journey Home, and more came together to make this dream come true.

Credit: Melroy Cort

“With everything that is going on today, to be in an atmosphere where you have 125 people with the same goal and the same attitude, it's just great,” John Ponte with Tunnels to Towers Foundation. said.

While the Cort family will get a new home, everyone working on the project will walk away with a gift.

“I met most of these guys 10 days ago. I now have a family for the rest of my life,” Columbus firefighter John Capretta said.

The house is completely built to accommodate a wheelchair with ramps, iPads that turn lights on, music and extra-wide doorways to Cort has space for his wheelchair.