OBERLIN, OH --The Natural Stone Institute has provided natural stone and fabrication services for its 42nd home with the Gary Sinise Foundation through its R.I.S.E. (Restoring Independence Supporting Empowerment) program. The Foundation’s R.I.S.E. program builds 100% mortgage-free specially adapted smart homes for severely wounded veterans and first responders. Natural stone and fabrication for U.S. Army Sergeant Christopher Kurtz were provided by Triton Stone Group, Exodus Stone Surfaces and Northern Stone Supply.  

Christopher Kurtz enlisted in the U.S. Army in February 2009 and deployed with 101st Airborne Division to the Arghandab River Valley region of Afghanistan in June 2010. In December 2010 a remote improvised explosive device (IED) detonated nearby where Christopher was walking on foot patrol. The blast tore through his legs. He lost two fingers on his left hand and broke his pelvis in three different places. Once stabilized on the battlefield, Christopher was evacuated to Kandahar Air Field then to Landstuhl, Germany before arriving at Walter Reed Army Medical Center to undergo additional surgeries where both his legs were amputated above the knee. After four years of active-duty service, Christopher medically retired from the Army in 2013 with the rank of Sergeant. 

Companies interested in getting involved with future projects are encouraged to email rise@naturalstoneinstitute.org. To learn more, and to see a list of all Natural Stone Institute members who have donated their time, products, and services to this cause, visit www.naturalstoneinstitute.org/RISE.