Wounded Marine Receives “Home Makeover”

By July 6, 2011Inspirational


When Sr. Advisor Nick Constantino of Operation First Response heard that wounded Hero Sgt. Matthew Sonderman was in need of home renovations, he was on the phone in a heartbeat making phone calls.   Within a few days, Sgt. Sonderman was overjoyed to learn that hardwood flooring, vinyl flooring, carpeting and drywall would all be donated and installed in his home in Havertown Pa.

Sgt. Matthew Sonderman, 26, retired from the Marine Corps, sustained multiple injuries in 2008 from and IED during his third tour in Afghanistan.

He spent months getting medical treatment in Texas and was grateful that Operation First Response assisted him and his family during that trying time. He has returned home to Drexel Hill to resume his civilian life. He just graduated with an associate’s degree from Delaware County Community College and will attend Drexel University in the fall to study Green Technology.

“The number one thing I learned from my service experience was not to take anything for granted. I appreciate the smallest things, and live every day to the fullest. I want to give back to my country and dedicate myself to honor the veterans,” said Sonderman.

When asked what he thought about the help with his home, Sgt. Sonderman replied: “When Operation First Response contacted me and told me there were contractors who were looking to help out a local veteran, I thought to myself how reassuring that was!  It was reassuring to know that there is certainly no shortage of caring, generous, and good-hearted people here in America and especially the Delaware Valley! All of the building materials and labor that is being donated is such a monumental help, not just to me financially, but physically too.  I try to do most of the work on the house myself, but I’m often limited by my disabilities.  I can not even begin to express in words how truly grateful I am.  I just hope that one day, I too may have the opportunity to help a returning veteran!  I will never be able to thank OFR for all you’ve done for me!  It truly feels like I’ve hit the “home renovation lottery”.

Operation First Response would like to thank the following for all of their donations and hard work and most of all…the honor and respect that they have given to Sgt. Matthew Sonderman!



Michael Halebian donated over 600 sqft of solid ¾ inch premium prefinished hardwood for Sgt. Sonderman’s 1st floor.


JJ Haines & Company, Inc. is donating about 300 sqft of vinyl flooring.

Sliwinski Floor Covering Services Inc. donation of all carpet, some Vinyl flooring.


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