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Mortgage-Free Home Surprise at UD Basketball Game

DAYTON, Ohio (Feb. 3, 2020) – Operation FINALLY HOME, JM Dungan Custom Homes and the Home Builders Association (HBA) of Dayton surprised U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant Aaron Zurn and his family with the news they’ll be receiving a custom-built, mortgage-free home in Dayton. The surprise took place during the University of Dayton basketball game Saturday (Feb. 1).

During halftime, Zurn and his family were recognized for his service and surprised the entire family with the news they’ve been selected to receive a new, custom-built, mortgage-free home from Operation FINALLY HOME! Rusty Carroll, Executive Director of Operation FINALLY HOME, Josh Dungan, with JM Dungan Custom Homes and Erika Deady, vice president of the HBA of Dayton, presented the Zurns with a symbolic key following the announcement.

“Sgt. Zurn bravely and selflessly served his country for more than 10 years,” said Rusty Carroll, Operation FINALLY HOME Executive Director. “We’re honored to partner with JM Dungan Custom Homes and the HBA of Dayton to provide such a deserving family with a place to call home.”

A groundbreaking ceremony at the homesite in Vandalia will take place this spring.

About U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant Aaron Zurn

U.S. Marine Corps Sergeant Aaron Zurn of Vandalia, Ohio, valiantly served his country for more than 10 years. 

Zurn began his service with two tours in Iraq as a U.S. Marine Corps Rifleman. On his first deployment to Fallujah, Zurn witnessed a fellow Marine killed by a rocket-propelled grenade within 10 minutes of arrival. That introduction, and the fierce fighting the Marines faced in Fallujah, still impact his life today.  In 2010, Zurn sought a new challenge and reenlisted as a “jump qualified” Marine Special Operations Forces (MARSOF) operator. Zurn deployed twice with MARSOF, and his company was frequently exposed to heavy enemy fire, ambush and improvised explosive devices (IEDs). During his final deployment, Zurn fell out of a helicopter and was knocked unconscious, resulting in Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI). He medically retired in 2016.

Zurn suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), bilateral hearing loss, knee injuries and other injuries from being a paratrooper. For his service, Zurn received awards including two Combat Action Ribbons, Navy Achievement Medal, Navy Accommodation Medal with a Bronze V, Marine Corps Commendation Medal and more.

Prior to enlisting, Zurn married his middle-school sweetheart, Brittany, who serves as his primary caregiver. Together, they have three children along with a service dog and enjoy history, photography, watching movies and traveling together. 

About Operation FINALLY HOME | Based in New Braunfels, Texas, Operation FINALLY HOME was established in 2005 as a nonpartisan/nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization with a mission to provide homes and home modifications to America’s military heroes and widows of the fallen. In 2020, Operation FINALLY HOME is celebrating 15 years honoring heroes with homes, and recently launched its 200th project. Operation FINALLY HOME partners with corporate sponsors, builder associations, builders, remodelers, developers, individual contributors and volunteers to help these heroes and their families by addressing one of their most pressing needs – a place to call home. For more information about Operation FINALLY HOME, visit, follow @OpFINALLYHOME on Twitter and find us on Facebook.

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