KDLT Home KDLT on Facebook KDLT on Twitter Get the KDLT iPhone App Get the KDLT Android App

Purple Heart Recipient Has Home Remodeled



Bookmark and Share

It was back in 2006, that Staff Sergeant Sean Johnson was injured while serving his country overseas.
Six years later, Sean finally received the much deserved, Purple Heart. Now, the veteran is receiving the home he deserves thanks to an program called Operation Opening Doors.

Coming home from a tour in Iraq is supposed to be a happy time, but it was quite the opposite for retired Staff Sergeant Sean Johnson and his wife Melissa.

Sean's wife Melissa said, "When he came back home, we noticed within the first couple of weeks, you go through this readjustment where you think it's the time change, the fatigue and that's he's in a different environment, but then you just start to notice things are wrong."

On March 25, 2006, while serving with Aberdeen's 452nd Ordinance Company in Iraq, a mortar shell exploded near him.

Sean said, "Doctors didn't know what to diagnose me with or what exactly was wrong. They just started treating all the symptoms with medications until they got to the root of the problem."

Sean was eventually diagnosed with a traumatic brain injury. With time, he's also lost sight in both his eyes.

"The left half of my right eye I can't see out of by I have vision left on the outside of my right eye," Sean said.

As you can imagine, it made it difficult for him to get around, even in the one place where you should feel the most comfortable.

Sean said, "The floors were a laminate before so they  were really slippery so you always have that chance where you can fall down and hurt yourself."

That's where Operation Opening Doors comes in. Sponsored by the Associated General Contractors of South Dakota, the program remodeled the Johnson's home. With $100,000, additions were added on to the front and back of the home, the bathroom was made handicap accessible and the bedroom bigger.
The kitchen was also remodeled, complete with all the bells and whistles.

Melissa said, "Cabinet doors that close softly so if you slam the door shut it doesn't startle him. If he forgets to close it, they'll kind of close on their own. It's got under cabinet lighting so he can see better, brighter lights on the ceiling so that increases visibility as well."

A small act of kindness, for a man who wouldn't hesitate to serve our country again.

Sean said, "You know you just gotta keep going and if they asked me to do it again, if I could, I would."

Operation Opening Doors is sponsored by the Associated General Contractors of South Dakota. An open house was held at the home from 3 to 5 o'clock Friday afternoon, a chance for Sean and Melissa to thank the community for their newly remodeled home.

An account has been set up at Plains Commerce Bank for those wishing to support this or future Operation Opening Doors projects. For more information on Operation Opening Doors contact the Associated General Contractors SD Build Chapter at 605-336-9338.

< Prev Story Back To Top Next Story >
     

DOT: Election Signs Are Banned From Right Of Way

The South Dakota Department of Transportation is reminding the public that ...

Biotech Summit Returns To Sioux Falls

The livestock bio-tech summit has arrived in Sioux Falls for their bi-annual ...

Hurricane Leaves Pierre Mayor Stuck In Mexico

The mayor of Pierre is one of the thousands of stranded tourists in the ...

Criticism Mounting For Vikings, Adrian Peterson  Sep. 16

Committee Gives Final OK To Rest Stop Rule Changes  Sep. 16

Lakota Man Wants Name Of Harney Peak Changed  Sep. 16

Teen Injured In SF Car Vs. Moped Accident  Sep. 16

$2.5M Donation To Fund Northern State Theater  Sep. 16

McCrory Gardens Hosts Vegetable Harvesting Program  Sep. 16

Workshop To Focus On Mountain Pine Beetle Handling  Sep. 16

South Dakota High School Students Earn Dual Credit  Sep. 16

The Daily Scoop: 9-16-2014  story with video  Sep. 16

Over 50 Homes Featured In 'Parade Of Homes'  story with video  Sep. 16

Clerical Error Delays 4th Tea Bond Vote   story with video  Sep. 15

Radisson Suspends Vikings Sponsorship  Sep. 15

SD Gets $1.2M For Unemployment Insurance Programs  Sep. 15

Parents Learn About Social Media  Sep. 15

SD Inmate's Death Ruled A Homicide  story with video  Sep. 15

Discipline Vs. Child Abuse: Where's The Line?  story with video  Sep. 15

South Dakota Teen Loses Her Battle With Cancer   story with video  Sep. 15

SD Board Adopts New Physical Education Standards  Sep. 15

Keystone XL Operator Asks For PUC Recertification  Sep. 15

KDLT News Archive
     

South Dakota Teen Loses Her Battle With Cancer   story with video

A South Dakota community is mourning the loss of one of ...

SD Prison Inmate Death Ruled A Homicide

A death certificate filed with the Minnehaha County ...

Police Find Missing Sioux Falls Teen

Sioux Falls Police say they found a teenage girl who had been ...

SD Inmate's Death Ruled A Homicide  story with video  Sep. 15

Teen Injured In SF Car Vs. Moped Accident  Sep. 16

SF Officer Injured In Motorcycle Accident Released From Hospital  Sep. 15

Radisson Suspends Vikings Sponsorship  Sep. 15

Slice Of Black Hills National Forest Being Sold  Sep. 15

KDLT News Archive
     

Grand Jury To Weigh Case Of NASCAR's Tony Stewart

A grand jury will decide whether NASCAR driver Tony Stewart will be charged in ...

Roosevelt bats sweep Mitchell   story with video

The top-ranked Roosevelt softball team swept 2 from Mitchell Monday night at Sherman ...

Vining, Lincoln lead Boys City Golf after 36  story with video

Tommy Vining shot a second round 71 at Willow Run to take a 5-shot lead over ...

Lundquist Passing Life & Roncalli's Tests  story with video  Sep. 15

Vikings statement on Adrian Peterson  Sep. 15

Vikings Reinstate Peterson After Abuse Charge  Sep. 15

Parsley's Pick Six Leads Northern To Victory  story with video  Sep. 14

Gridiron Greatness: September 14th, 2014  story with video  Sep. 14

KDLT Sports Stories
     
Back To Top