Veteran Stories

Brandon Zettl

Brandon followed family tradition of both his grandfathers by enlisting in the US Army. He wanted to see the world while serving a greater purpose. The experience changed his life forever. After basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia, Brandon went to Washington, DC, where he spent three years with The Old Guard, the oldest active-duty Army infantry unit serving our nation since 1784. As the official ceremonial unit protecting Washington, DC, in time of national emergency, Brandon served in honor parades, funeral teams, ceremonies, and events throughout the metropolitan area.

He was deployed to Djibouti and Ethiopia, where he provided protection for engineers while also training local armies to fight a civil war. After a brief stint back in DC, where he met his soon-to-be bride, Danielle, an Air Force Radiology Technologist, Brandon went to Vicenza, Italy, with the 173rd Airborne Infantry as team leader and then squad leader.

Two deployments took him to Afghanistan protecting innocent people, working with police agencies, securing land, ensuring valid elections, and getting injured on several occasions. After returning to Fort Campbell, KY, Brandon’s injuries began to develop from previous combat encounters. His health deteriorated to where he went to Warrior Transition Unit (WTU) before being medically retired in 2013.

In 2005, Brandon married Danielle while he was stationed in Italy and Danielle was still stationed in MD. Two years later, she moved to Italy with their infant son after serving 4 years and being honorably discharged from the military. Today, they have 3 children which keep them both very busy. Besides spending quality time with family and their three dogs, Brandon is interested in muscle cars, hot rods, motorcycles, hunting, and his top interest, fishing.

Danielle, Brandon’s wife, found Purple Heart Homes and is eagerly awaiting a move to a new life in NC. PHH is proud to provide accessibility for Brandon to safely maneuver a single floor home. When asked what this help means, Brandon replied “We’re so appreciative and grateful. It’s going to be a new start and we’ll have less to worry about.” Welcome home, Zettl family; THANK YOU for your service!

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