First and foremost, James Voss enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1996 to serve his country. The education opportunities that came along with serving in the Army appealed to him as well. The Tennessee native completed Basic Training at Fort Benning, GA, before returning to his home state to be stationed in the town of Woodbury. At this point, James’ military environments were consistent. That all changed when he was stationed at Schofield Barracks in Hawaii.
James told us, “To go from Tennessee to Hawaii was a culture shock, that’s for sure.” The culture shock lasted only so long before James made his way back to Tennessee where he transferred to the National Guard in McMinnville. He proceeded to serve as a Specialist from Tennessee, to Mississippi and California, before going to Iraq in 2004. James spent one year in Iraq, where he went from raiding mud houses to serving as a body guard for the Colonel. He returned to McMinnville, TN, in 2005. Not much time passed before James’ life was altered drastically.
In 2006, James was involved in a car accident that put him in a coma for three weeks. He suffered from two strokes during that time. When he got out of the coma, he had paralysis throughout the entire right side of his body and a TBI that left him with only 10% of his brain function. James spent the next 11 months going through physical therapy that miraculously restored most of the movement in his body. It took almost 6 years for his brain function to grow from that of a 6-month-old to a teenager. Despite that progress, James had to make a decision. He told us, “Did I want to go to college or return to Iraq?” James decided to pursue his education and was honorably discharged in 2008.
Currently, James lives in Murfeesboro, TN, with his 16-year-old daughter. Their home is in need of renovations that will make James’ living situation more comfortable and safe. Purple Heart Homes will remodel James’ kitchen and bathroom to make them handicap accessible, as well as additional improvements to the structure of the house. We’re thankful for your service, James, and we welcome you to our Purple Heart Homes family!