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Military Family Finds Respite with Easter Seals
Date:5/22/2013

Silver Spring, MD (PRWEB) May 22, 2013

On a Saturday morning last summer, MSgt. Joe DesLauriers and his wife, Lisa, spent a few hours watching “The Bourne Legacy” at the White Flint Mall movie theater in North Bethesda, Md. While this may seem like a typical activity to many couples, it is a pure luxury for the DesLauriers family. This little stretch of respite from their everyday reality has become possible through the Military Family Respite Program of Easter Seals Serving DC | MD | VA.

Life changed for the DesLauriers family on Sept. 23, 2011. Joe was serving his fourth deployment to the Middle East, this time in Afghanistan. While working with a three-man explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) team, he stood above an improvised explosive device (IED) that exploded beneath him. Joe lost both legs and most of his left arm.

“It felt like I got hit in the chest with a sledgehammer,” Joe recalled. “I immediately knew what happened. I looked at my arm and just saw white and red. It was my bones, blood and tissue.”

He lost consciousness shortly after his realization and woke up five days later at Walter Reed National Military Center in Bethesda, Md. Lisa was there when he woke up, as well as both sets of parents. At that point, Lisa collected all of her belongings from the couple’s home in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., and moved to Rockville, Md., where they planned to live while Joe rehabilitated and learned to adapt to life with his new prosthetic arm and legs. Joe was discharged from Walter Reed exactly two months after the injury and moved in with Lisa.

Cameron, the couple’s first child, was born two weeks later (Dec. 8, 2011) just two floors above where Joe was staying at Walter Reed. From the beginning, Cameron was an extremely well-behaved baby, according to his proud parents. “It took me a long time to truly realize we had a baby,” said Lisa. “I was so engulfed with what was going on with Joe. I somet
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