Local military blogger helps wounded warrior with national contest
The wife of an East Tennessee wounded warrior is helping others in similar situation through storytelling.
Cheryl Gasner's blog caught the attention of the Yasenak family. That's where they found out about a contest that could help them with their wounded warrior's therapy.
"It started as a way to talk family and it's become a way to reach out to others and let them know that this is what I'm going through and it's normal and here's some resources to help," said Gasner.
Life for her husband is returning to normal after an IED explosion severely injured him in Iraq.
Home Depot selected Cheryl to be a part of their "Giving the Gift of Good" campaign.
She was asked to choose a military family she thought deserved $20,000 dollars of repairs and services to their home. She didn't know, Mary and Nick Yasenak before she read their application, but they knew her.
"I've read Cheryl's blog for three years. I just didn't know she lived in Knoxville," said Mary Yasenak.
The families have a lot in common. After nine years in special ops for the Army, Nick, is disabled from a helicopter crash and suffers from post traumatic stress disorder.
"It's stories we can both relate to in different ways," she said.
However Nick finds solace in the care of his animals. He's got several now, but wants to create a mini-farm to help him with is therapy. The fencing is too expensive right now.
"Animals don't demand a lot from you," he said.
They also need help with roof repairs. But these requests are not as important to them as the new friendship they've made.
"It would be awesome if we won but it's better that I found Cheryl," said Mary.
"What's so great is that it turns out that we're friends with this couple and it's so hard for guys that have been injured to make friends so it's an added benefit," said Cheryl.