Wednesday December 21, 2016
U.S. Army First Sgt. Guillermo Rivas received the ultimate gift this holiday season. On Tuesday, November 16, representatives from Operation FINALLY HOME, Altura Homes, and the Family of 3 Foundation, A Robert Griffin III Foundation, presented Sgt. Rivas, wife Donnajayne (DJ) and his family with keys to their new, mortgage-free home in Greenville.
The new home ceremony came just six months after learning he would be honored with this new custom built home courtesy of operation finally home during a Texas Rangers. In attendance at the new home ceremony where U.S. flags lined the yard were representatives of the Patriot Guard Riders, Greenville Mayor David Dreiling, the Hunt County Veterans Honor Guard, representatives of the offices of U.S. Representative John Ratcliffe, State Senator Bob Hall, State Representative Dan Flynn, Becky Crabtree of the Greenville Elks Lodge, and members of the Greenville community.
Mayor Dreiling presented Sgt. Rivas with an official decree on behalf of the city council.
“Sgt. Rivas, I salute you for your military service,” Dreiling said. “As a veteran as well as the mayor, we are proud to have you here.”
Sgt. Rivas respectfully accepted his custom built Altura home on behalf of his family and on behalf of “all my fallen battle buddies. Thank you very much.”
DJ Rivas discussed calling many places home throughout their almost 27 years of marriage.
“Thank you is simply not enough,” she said, “Home for us always has been wherever we have been together. But now, together we will be finally home.”
In addition to a new home Sgt. Rivas also received a $2,000 Freedom Grant to go toward anything needed for his new home from Becky Crabtree of the Greenville Elks Lodge.
Sgt. Rivas is a 26-year military veteran who served in both in the Army National Guard and the U.S. Marine Corps. Over the course of his career, Sgt. Rivas received notable awards such as the Purple Heart, four Meritorious Service Medals, a Navy/Marine Combat Action Ribbon, and a Humanitarian Service Medal. He retired in 2014. Ground broke on Sgt. Rivas’ home back in June. Altura Homes is a proud supporter of operation finally home, and is happy to see such a well-deserving American hero receive a free home. Sgt. Rivas is the 117th home provided to veterans by Operation FINALLY HOME.