Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation has joined forces with the Boot Campaign and the Military Warriors Support Foundation, non-profit organizations supporting returning American military troops, to present a “mortgage free” home to a wounded military veteran and Purple Heart recipient. U.S. Army Specialist Tyler Schell, who served in Afghanistan, was honored this week during a Fairway “Boot Camp” to train local mortgage professionals and real estate agents on how to help active U.S. military service members and veterans overcome barriers to homeownership. A Sharon, Pennsylvania native joined the military to serve his country and was deployed to Afghanistan in January 2009. On Sept. 2, 2009, Schell was on patrol when his MRAP military truck hit an explosive device. Trapped inside the vehicle until he was freed by the truck commander, Schell suffered third degree burns over 30 percent of his body, compression fractures in his spine, traumatic brain injury, short-term memory loss and post traumatic stress disorder. Schell received a Purple Heart and Army Commendation Medal and plans to attend college and study architecture. Schell was presented with the mortgage-free home at the beginning of three “Boot Camp” events held in Pennsylvania designed to train local mortgage professionals and real estate agents on how to help active U.S. military service members and veterans overcome their unique challenges to buying a home. Fairway’s Military Mortgage Specialist (MMS) and Certified Military Residential Specialist (CMRS) certification programs equip housing professionals to handle with care the home purchase needs of active duty and former military clients, many of whom have higher credit debt than average Americans and are often targeted by payday lenders. “Tyler Schell is a true American hero and we are grateful for his service,” said Louise Thaxton, Fairway’s Military Mortgage Director who presented Schell with the “key” to his mortgage-free home. “He has sacrificed so much for his country. He, like many other Americans who have put their lives on the line, deserves a chance at homeownership. Our Boot Camp events were created to help them realize that dream." Fairway Independent Mortgage is a proud supporter of the American military and has helped thousands of active military personnel and veterans nationwide buy homes. Fairway employees have pledged several hundred thousand dollars in donations over a 12-month period to help provide mortgage-free homes to veterans in association with the Boot Campaign, a non-profit organization supporting returning American military troops, and made possible through the Military Warriors Support Foundation’s Homes 4 Wounded Heroes program.