2019 Home Recipient
SPC Nick Sterling
Nick Sterling joined the United States Army right after graduating from High School in Hawaii Kai, Hawaii in 2005. He became an Infantryman and was stationed at Schofield Barracks as a member of the 25th Infantry Division. He deployed to Iraq in 2006. From 2006 to 2007, his unit carried combat operations from Kirkuk down to the Diyala River Valley in Baqubah during the surge. His Battalion took heavy losses throughout their deployment including 3 members of his platoon and a helicopter crash claiming the lives of 10 Infantryman, 2 crew chiefs and 2 pilots.
Nick’s vehicle hit multiple IED’s and managed to come out unscathed until September 5, 2007 just two weeks before the end of his Unit's combat operations. During a patrol, an IED detonated underneath the truck carrying Nick and 2 of his fellow Infantrymen, cutting it in half. Miraculously, and unlike previous hits, no one was killed. Nick, his driver, and Squad Leader were all wounded and medavac’d, earning all three the Purple Heart. Nick was 20 years old.
Nick left the service in 2008 and made his way to Texas where he earned his first Bachelor’s Degree at Texas State University and met his wife Jessica. Nick and Jessica married in 2015 and welcomed their first son, Kane, in 2017. They are also expecting their 2nd child in October 2019. Nick is now a full-time musician in Texas, he finds writing and performing very therapeutic and he enjoys hearing of the impact his music has made on other veterans.
Smiles Charity Home Recipients
2018 Home Recipient
SGT. COE COKER
US ARMY, RETIRED
Sgt. Coe D. Coker was born in Houston, Texas and attended Tarkington ISD from kindergarten until graduation in 2007. After graduating high school, he attended school to be a pharmacy technician. Upon completion, he decided to join the US Army as a 91F small arms/towed artillery repairman. Sgt. Coker left to attend basic training at FT. Jackson, South Carolina on August 23, 2008. After basic training he was stationed at APG (Aberdeen Proving Grounds) in Maryland to attend advanced individual training courses. During the course of his training he was injured while marching his platoon to school. He suffered a broken rotator cuff, clavicle and several broken ribs. This injury paved the way for more extensive training in his field of service for the US Army. After several months at Aberdeen he received permanent change of station orders to Fort Riley, Kansas. Upon arrival and intake in to the 1st Infantry Division (Big Red One) he was assigned to HSC DHHB (Headquarters Support Company, Division Headquarters and Headquarters Companies) as the Armorer and Weapons Mechanic. In December of 2010 Sgt. Coker was deployed to Al Basrah, Iraq in Support of US Army operations in that country. After a 13 month deployment he returned stateside, where he was reassigned to the CGMCG (Commanding General’s Mounted Color Guard).
On October 10, 2011 he was house sitting for a friend. He was injured when his shotgun discharged, while on safety, into his leg. This injury resulted in his left leg being amputated above the knee. After his injury Sgt. Coker was transferred to Ft. Sam Houston for medical treatment. He was medically retired from service after undergoing treatment from October 29, 2011 until January 27, 2013.
Sgt. Coker and his wife, Alexandria, have 2 children. Kathryne is 18 months and Roslyne is 5 months. Kathryne was born with multiple medical conditions. She requires medical attention from various specialists for a hole in her heart, abnormalities with her legs, and cosmetic disorders in both of her hands. It will make a tremendous difference to have their home close to Kathryne’s medical care in Dallas.
2018 Adaptation Recipient
SSG. Colt Floyd
US ARMY, RETIRED
Growing up in the Texas Panhandle, Colt Floyd participated in sports and enjoyed hunting and fishing. Excelling in the classroom and in sports, Colt was a six sport athlete in high school playing football, baseball, basketball, powerlifting, golf and ran track. Football being his favorite sport, Colt played quarterback and decided to take a football scholarship to Southern Nazarene University in Bethany, Oklahoma. Though he loved football, he really couldn’t decide on a major. During this time the attacks on the World Trade Center took place and Colt felt as though enlisting in the service was an avenue he should entertain. Serving as an Army Infantryman was one of the best life experiences for him. Serving two tours in Afghanistan, one in 2006-2007 and another in 2011-2012, Colt is absolutely proud to have served.
During his 2011-2012 deployment, his unit came under ambush in Saygal Valley, Laghman Province, Afghanistan. Colt’s patrol of 37 was bombarded with RPG’s and small arms fire. One rocket struck his young team leader, Stg. Mycal Prince, killing him on impact. Colt was standing near him and took a lot of the blast, blowing him down a cliff face, wounding him and several others. Colt was medevac’d from the valley along with 13 others from that event. He recovered from his injuries and returned to his men, finishing the seven months remaining on his tour. He was then placed at Ft. Sam Houston to begin his recovery process. It proved to be a challenging one but Colt was up to the task.
His military Awards include:
•Bronze Star – a result of the 2011 attack
•Purple Heart – a result of the 2011 attack
•Combat Infantryman Badge
•(Two) Army Commendation Medals
Currently, Colt works full time for Kelso Technologies in Bonham, Texas. He resides there with his wife, Cristyn, and their 6 children. He works full time and attends college full time at Grayson College in Denison, Texas.