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Veteran honored on KISS stage, receives new home

A local veteran was presented with a brand new, mortgage-free home at Saturday's KISS concert in Huntington. (WCHS/WVAH)

HUNTINGTON, WV (WCHS/WVAH) -- For the first time in 28 years, legendary rock band, KISS, made a stop in Huntington on its "Freedom to Rock Tour,” but the artists had more on their agenda than the concert itself.

Dr. Pepper, Walmart, and the Military Warriors Support Foundation partnered together to give away houses to deserving veterans who have been wounded in combat, and on the KISS stage Saturday night, a brand new, mortgage-free home was awarded to one local veteran.

After being severely injured in combat and losing sight in one eye, Jeremy Horsley retired from the military, but that didn't stop him from serving his country. Since then he has helped more than 100 military families get placed into mortgage-free homes.

At the KISS concert Saturday, it was his turn to receive a house.

Horsley was chosen to receive a brand new, mortgage-free home, and he said, "it's a huge burden lifted off your back.”

Frank Tomblin, the market manager for Walmart, said that Horsley is truly deserving of this gift.

"He's a great guy, very, very deserving. I think it will help him and his kids out a lot,” Tomblin said. "His story is sad, but I think we've got an opportunity here to help him rebuild his life.”

Four years ago, when the first home was awarded on a KISS stage, the band lead the pledge of allegiance. Ken Eakes, the executive director of the Military Warriors Support Foundation, said that since that day, KISS has pledged its allegiance to the flag at every single concert.

"Since then they've continued to go on and just become an incredible patriot band, and in fact, the name of their rock concert this year is "Freedom to Rock,” Eakes said. They've really taken on the persona of doing things that honor the men and women of our military."

Horsley said he is not only grateful for these three organizations, but also for the platform that KISS has continued to provide for them.

"We have a lot of great organizations and stuff that are out there, and for a legendary one like that to give back, is amazing,” Horsley said.

Those who were a part of choosing who would receive the brand new home said Horsley and his family were a perfect match for the home and its location.

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