“It’s mine and that feels great,” said Powell. “It takes a lot of worries away.”
Cody graduated from Grant Union High School in 2005. He remembers that year well because their baseball team won the State Championship. He then attended WyoTech in Laramie, Wyoming where he received his Advanced Diesel Degree in 2006. After graduation he returned to John Day to work for Iron Triangle as a diesel mechanic.
On July 23, 2007 Cody’s life changed forever. While driving home that night, he fell asleep at the wheel, rolled his pickup truck and was ejected from the vehicle. He suffered a traumatic brain injury.
He completed an extensive recovery time, but continues to struggle with some memory issues. But that hasn’t slowed him down. He is back to work at Grant County Auto a few hours each week, and he never gave up on his dream of buying his own home.
Last year he and his mother, Julie Powell, attended the Home Buying Workshop sponsored by Northeast Oregon Housing Authority and Community Connection where he learned all of the steps necessary to become a first-time home buyer. In July 2015 he signed the papers and is now a homeowner. NEOHA assists Cody with his monthly mortgage through the Homeownership Program and Family Self-Sufficiency Program.
His mother explained that Cody’s new home holds special meaning for the entire Powell family.
“It showed us Cody’s renewed independence and his sense of pride. That warms our hearts – how much Cody loves his new home. He is an inspiration to all those who cross his path,” said Julie.
“As parents it gives us a sense of security that he will always have a home. We have tried to get everything in place for him because we know that we will not be here forever.”
Recently Cody picked out colors and had his new home painted. Inside, he has set up a cozy arrangement of furnishings and personal belongings including a special side table that his mother constructed out of barn wood from their home place. Over his television room sports a “Man Cave” sign.
“I love my new home, and it’s so great not to have to worry about renting from someone else, and any future moves. This is home.”
For more information on the Homeownership Program contact Di Lyn Larsen-Hill at 541-963-5360, ext. 32.