Andy Harvell, 24th STS, The Hill, NC.
Special Tactics Combat Controller, Husband, & Father
"Andy was a loving husband to his wife Krista, a caring father to his two children Hunter and Ethan and a proud United States Air Force Combat Controller.

He was also a bad ass warrior who struck fear in the hearts of terrorists.

We will miss him forever but we take solace knowing he gave his life serving his country and fighting for what he believed was right.".................. Mrs. Harvell.


"Operation Finally Home" held their grand reveal tonight to identify the family that will receive a mortgage free home built here in Aberdeen. The event tonight included an opening performance by the Chorus from Southern Middle School and the Pinecrest High School Marching Band. The US Army Golden Knights parachute team completed a performance jump to help get things started during the evening.

The Harvell's Receive a NEW HOME 
SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. - Oct 4th, 2013  A military widow received the surprise of a lifetime Friday when she learned a charity would be building her a new home.

A gathering called a military appreciation event was really just a front for the surprise for Krista Harvell, who heard the news during a presentation at Pinecrest High School.

With dozens of onlookers in the stands, Golden Knights veterans parachuted onto the field and delivered the floor plans for her new house to Harvell, who was in the crowd with no idea she was about to become the guest of honor.

"I was like -- I thought I might faint," Harvell laughed.

Operation Finally Home is building a house for Harvell and her two young sons on a lot in Aberdeen.

Her husband, Air Force Staff Sgt. Andrew Harvell, was killed in Afghanistan in 2011. Since then, she moved to California to be closer to his family, but eventually decided she needed to come back to the Sandhills where she has family and where they lived when Andrew served at Fort Bragg.

"You have your highs and your lows and you can't sit there and say, 'I'm OK,' because you're not. You're not going to be OK," Krista said. "There's not a day that goes by that I don't wish I had my husband there."

The Moore County Home Builders Association and the Pinehurst-Southern Pines Realtors Association worked together to make the surprise a reality.
"Her brother lives here, her grandparents are in Sanford -- she has family here," said Paula Nash, with the Realtors Association. "So this feels like home to her, and she would like to move here and we want to welcome her here."

Meredith Sledz, with the Home Builders Association, said seven builders have come together to work on the house. Even more donors have stepped forward to furnish the home and provide other assistance.

"A lot of military personnel have discovered what a gem Moore County is," Sledz said. "So coming over here and welcoming this family is just natural for all of us."

Harvell said she was totally shocked by the surprised, but she was excited to take a closer look at the blueprints of the home. She said she is looking forward to returning to an area she loves.

"I really enjoyed California, and it's great, but it's nothing like being here," she said. "And I'm so happy to be coming home."

Following a jump by four members of the Golden Knights, who landed at midfield and delivered the blueprints for Harvell's new home, Kirgan, who had given a speech on how his organization came to be, called the three "contestants" forward. Sledz and Nash are also married to servicemen, and he praised military wives for their courage.

"Wives are the backbone of families," he said. "While they are supporting their men in battle, they are at home raising the children and building a strong family unit."

After saying a few words about Krista Harvell's circumstances, Kirgan said he was "too overcome" and could not continue to tell the other womens' stories.

He then quickly turned to Harvell.

"Here, Krista, are the blueprints for your new home," he said, handing the plans to her.

A tearful Harvell then realized that she had been "set up."

"It has been difficult since my husband's death, and I couldn't have made it without my babies and without my friends," she said, her two sons Hunter, 5, and Ethan, 2, at her side. "I see that a lot of my friends are here in the audience, and I appreciate you being here.

"This is a new beginning for us, and I thank you all so much."

Harvell still has family in the area. Her brother, grandparents, and an uncle live in Moore County, and a sister plans to relocate here.

The Harvell's new home, at 2,500 square feet and valued at about $350,000, will be built in the Bethesda Farm subdivision. A special ground breaking will be held Saturday morning.

Harvell, who is completing a master's degree in business administration, said she had "no idea" that she would be the recipient of a new home.
"I thought I was here for an interview to be held Saturday," she said. "This is unbelievable."

The Pinecrest High School Marching Band provided musical entertainment for the evening, and students from Aberdeen PrimarY School recited the pledge of allegiance. The Pinecrest cheerleaders also performed.

The master of ceremonies was Lt. Col. Ted Mataxis of Carthage. Sgt. 1st Class Angela Frost sang the national anthem, and army chaplain Capt. Rudy Stevens gave the invocation.

"Help us, Lord, to remember the families of those who serve," he said. Their days are often fraught with concern for their fighter, and their days are often long and not much better than their soldier's, their sailor's, their Marine's, or their airmen's days.

"May they know that this community cares, and that they are finally home."

The all volunteer effort to build the home is being spearheaded by the Moore County Home Builders association and the Pinehurst-Southern Pines Area Association of Realtors. Donations are still being accepted and you may contact the Home Builders Association by telephone at 910-944-2992 or visit their office on NC 211 in Aberdeen.

A ground breaking ceremony is scheduled for tomorrow morning at 918 Devonshire Trail in Aberdeen at 10:00 AM. The event is open to the public.