For Brian McGuire, serving his country was born out of family tradition. Following in the footsteps of his father, grandfather and other men and women in his family, Brian joined the military in 2006. A member of the Army’s 3rd Ranger Battalion, he was deployed four times, twice to Iraq and twice to Afghanistan. It was outside Kandahar, Afghanistan on his final deployment in 2010 when Brian was critically wounded by an improvised explosive device.
After medically retiring in 2012 as a sergeant, Brian moved to North Carolina with his wife, Katie, and faced post-military challenges. One of those challenges would be caring for his now four-year-old daughter, Josie, when she was a baby. The McGuires needed to find a way to get a wheelchair adaptive crib so Brian could more easily take care of his daughter, especially during the middle of the night.
After Katie was able to find someone who made adaptive cribs, which are hard to come by, she reached out to Semper Fi & America’s Fund who stepped in and helped.
“The Fund made something that doesn’t really exist, happen, which was awesome,” said Brian.
One of the special aspects of the crib was that it was customized to be just the right height for Brian to be able to reach into the crib with ease and take care of his new “bundle of joy” without the use of prosthetics. The crib maker even came to the house to assemble it and showed the McGuires how to use it. The crib continues to get good use-this time for Josie’s little sister, Daisy, who just turned one.
This crib not only brought a dedicated father closer to his daughters but also gave a loving husband an opportunity to help his wife Katie. He calls the crib a “life changing” gift because “it lets us share those parental responsibilities, which is a huge load off of both of us,” said Brian.
Getting the crib was just the first of many times The Fund was there to support the McGuires. Also weighing heavily on Brian’s mind was fixing the roof on his new home that had been battered by years of storms. “I was literally lying awake at night trying to figure out how to fix this roof,” said Brian. And, so without hesitation, Semper Fi & America’s Fund sprang into action to install a new one on the house.
With respect to the roof, Brian said there was “no hesitation at all on The Fund’s part. They absolutely stepped up and just took care of it, which was amazing.” It was another “huge weight coming off.”
Semper Fi & America’s Fund also helped the McGuire family in other important ways, including redoing the hardwood floors to make it easier for Brian to move around his home in a wheelchair, helping him with the purchase of a new handicapped accessible vehicle for the growing family and a new car port.
Today, the McGuires are thriving. Katie just finished the year teaching and the family is looking forward to a relaxing summer. Brian is also busy with the upkeep of another family tradition, restoring the 1970 Chevy C10 truck that has been in his family for decades.
Not only was Brian taken home from the hospital in this truck when he was born, but he used it on his wedding day and to take Josie home from the hospital when she was born. Brian hopes that by restoring this American classic treasure, it will last at least another 50 years.
It has been said that “Home is Where the Heart Is.” On this Father’s Day, the McGuires are forever thankful to their other family-The Fund family-for being there for them as they make new and lasting memories together.