"EXTREME MAKEOVER: HOME EDITION" DESIGN CREW SURPRISES
THE HILL FAMILY IN OTTAWA, KANSAS
Actress Glenn Close Helps an Iraqi War Vet and His Family
"Hill Family" Parts 1 & 2 -- "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" travels to Ottawa, Kansas, to surprise the Hill family with the door knock that can change lives in an episode featuring award-winning actress Glenn Close, who personally nominated the family. The episode airs on SATURDAY, JUNE 30 (8:00-9:00 & 9:00-10:00 p.m., ET) on the ABC Television Network. (Rebroadcast. OAD: 11/4/11)
Staff Sergeant Allen Hill was almost killed by a massive roadside bomb while serving in Iraq. He has recovered from the physical wounds, but the injuries that we can't see still haunt him. Environmental triggers such as loud noises, dimly lit spaces and long hallways can bring on episodes of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), some of which are dangerous, as they can send Sergeant Hill running for cover. One of his family's greatest fears is that he will run out into the street during an episode and be killed. Sergeant Hill has just completed years-long inpatient PTSD treatment and is ready to come home. Unfortunately, environmental triggers still surround his former home: The house is near both a rock quarry, where there are frequent dynamite blasts, and a train yard that is a perpetual source of terrifying noises and vibrations. For Sergeant Hill to be reunited with his family, he needs a new home�one built in a suitable location.
Glenn Close nominated the Hill Family for the show. She founded a not-for-profit organization in 2009, Bring Change 2 Mind, to combat the stigma that surrounds mental illness, having witnessed the stigma that her sister Jessie and nephew Calen experienced in their own journeys through mental illness. Bring Change 2 Mind educates and raises awareness about mental illness, including PTSD. Ms. Close has also been heavily involved in the Puppies Behind Bars program which employs prisoners to train service dogs for wounded vets. Sergeant Hill's new service dog from Puppies Behind Bars, Frankie, has helped him make significant strides toward wellness and is his lifeline.
Bring Change 2 Mind sourced a piece of land and assisted in its donation for the Hills' new house. The "EM: HE" design team has just seven days to build that brand-new home in a safe, quiet area so the family can be reunited with its patriarch. The parents and their two sons have been whisked away on a dream vacation to Yosemite while "EM: HE" team leader Ty Pennington, and designers Paul DiMeo, Paige Hemmis, Ed Sanders, and Johnny Littlefield, as well as local builders M.A.C. Corporation and Canyon Creek Construction, LLC and community volunteers, build the structure.
The series is produced by Endemol USA, of Endemol Holding, and executive-produced by Brady Connell & George Verschoor. David Goldberg is Chairman, Endemol North America. This program carries a TV-PG parental guideline.