Friday was one Veterans Day that an Army family in Maryland will never forget. Actor Gary Sinise and a slew of motorcycles showed up in a quiet Chevy Chase neighborhood to bestow some good fortune on Captain Luis Avila and his family.
Avila was seriously wounded in an IED blast in Afghanistan. His injuries left him in a wheelchair, but his family now has a state-of-the-art home, thanks to the Gary Sinise Foundation.
“It is my honor to be here to honor him and his family on this special day,” Sinise said.
Avila is married with three children. His family is the 15th to receive a home sponsored by Sinise’s foundation this year. In all, the foundation will build 50 “smart homes” for veterans.
The high-tech home is controlled digitally.
“It’s not a key, it’s an iPad, and it’s going to make this house work,” said Sinise as he handed the controls to the family.
“Congratulations on your new home. Welcome home, my friend,” he added.
Avila was wounded in 2011 and has been recovering at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Md. He lost his left leg, and suffered two strokes and brain damage.
Sinise has a lengthy history of supporting veterans. Last year, the actor received West Point’s Thayer Award, which is presented to active duty and retired service members as well as civilians who have contributed to the military.