TSB Community Contributor
On Monday, July 22, at 9 a.m., HelpingaHero.org will honor SRA Brandon Byers, retired from the U.S. Air Force, with a new home in the Prestwyck Community in McKinney at 1901 Elite Road, 78701.
Please join us to say thanks to this American hero for his service and sacrifice. Wear red, white and blue, and bring the whole family to this patriotic event. Special guests include U.S. Congressman Sam Johnson, a decorated war hero, and McKinney Mayor Brian Loughmiller.
HelpingaHero.org builds specifically adapted homes for our severely wounded heroes injured in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Brandon played in the high school band in Waxahachie and served as drum major his junior and senior years. He also played in a jazz band in high school and at North Central Texas College where he started his degree before serving in the military. Brandon graduated from the University of North Texas in May of 2012.
He joined the military because he wanted to serve and to do his part as did the people who came before him, like his father, grand- fathers, cousins, in-laws, and many of his friends. His plan was to make a career in the military for 20 years.
On May 10, 2005, he joined the Air Force and, in October, was assigned to Nellis Air Force Base as his first duty station. He was there for 6 months prior to his first, and last, deployment to Camp Bucca, Iraq. He trained as a driver and .50 caliber machine gunner in Seattle, WA. He worried about his wife and daughter at first but began to realize how important his job was and was very proud of his assigned duties.
His vehicle was hit by an Explosively Formed Projectile (EFP) on October 16, 2006, that severely injured his left leg and right hand. After the explosion, he woke to find he was lying in the vehicle rather than standing. The amount of damage to his leg required massive blood transfusion, and he was intubated for two days. The doctors were able to save enough of his left leg and right hand to use today.
After 30-plus surgeries, he has severe nerve damage to his leg, a tendon transfer on his hand, and a full knee replacement. He can walk and has use of his hand, but he has had to find different ways to do things. Brandon is pursuing an amputation of his left leg because of severe pain and a rapid decline in function. He is positive he can still accomplish his goals with the full support of his family. He chooses to show others that the injuries do not define him but are a part of who he is now. He can still live fully knowing that his sacrifice did not weaken him but made him stronger.
Brandon and Megan have been married for 8 years and have an 11 year old daughter and a 4 year old son. Megan is a stay at home mom and Brandon’s full-time care giver. She has recently started an at-home baking business. She never let him quit or second guess him- self through rehabilitation, and he credits her with their marriage becoming stronger because she never left his side.
McKinney will be their new home. He looks forward to providing a safe and secure home for his family and serving others in his community.