FAYETTEVILLE, NC (WTVD) -- An American hero is now living the American Dream. U.S. Marine Sgt. Bernie Justilien received the keys to his newly renovated home in Fayetteville.
The home was donated mortgage-free by the Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals (VAREP) in partnership with Bank of America.
Justilien joined the Marine Corps in 2001, trained as a Logistic Specialist and served as an A-Gunner in Afghanistan.
After being medically discharged in 2007, Justilien had a hard time integrating back into civilian life. His wife became his full-time caregiver and helped him through his physical rehabilitation.
In addition to managing through his physical challenges, Justilien and his family experienced stints of homelessness.
Despite the challenges, Justilien and his family endured. He went to school and became a counselor working with children and families who have been affected by trauma or catastrophic events.
In tears, Justilien thanked his friends, family and everyone who made his dream of owning a home come true.
From homeless to homeowner: Marine veteran gifted with new house