CHARLOTTE - For injured veterans returning home and adjusting to a new life can be difficult. Operation FINALLY HOME looks to help veterans and their families with the help and resources they need for life after the military. 

Tears of joy roll down U.S. Army Sergeant Howard Appleby’s face as he and his family are awarded a mortgage –free home. “I’m feeling good, I’m ready and my family is ready and we can’t wait,” said Appleby.

Operation FINALLY HOME and PulteGroup’s Built to Honor program partnered to build the Appleby’s perfect home.

“It was just a way we thought it’s not about just building homes its doing the right thing and giving back to the communities,” said Wes Copeland, Executive Director of PulteGroup's.

Appleby shocked by the surprise, at first not believing this dream was a reality. “My wife said ‘Babe your name, your name on the wall’ I’m like 'Oh My God!' I was in shock, I was in shock when I saw my name,” said Appleby.

Appleby was honorably discharged in 2011 after sustaining several injuries when deployed in Afghanistan that resulted in a traumatic brain injury.

Now he is simply thankful and ready to take control of his life again. “It means a lot, family comes first. My health, now I can more think about my health and get back to a better life," said Appleby.

Despite all Appleby has been through he relies on his life motto to help him carry on day by day. “Life is not a race…but a journey and in life you have to search and we’ve been searching and we’re finally home,” he said.

Construction on the home will start soon. The Appleby’s forever home is expected to be complete by mid-July.