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New Swimming Pool for Wounded Army Veteran
Michael Miyamoto, LC/DBM



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Paolo Benedetti, owner of Aquatic Technology Pool and Spa, Morgan Hill, Calif., was the driving force behind the pro bono construction of a new swimming pool for a severely injured Army veteran who uses it for rehabilitation and therapy. The project also involved a spa, outdoor kitchen and a children's playground. In the photo, a crew works on the pool's rebar network. Benedetti gave $10,000 of his own money toward the effort, and solicited donations of pool equipment, rebar, plumbing pipes and conduit. He staged fundraisers to buy the shotcrete, tile, coping, plaster, a pool cover, the playground equipment, drainage pipes and other items, and to pay for the grading and concrete workers. Over 50 firms contributed to Benedetti's project.
Photo: Paolo Benedetti


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The new pool for Army Sgt. Brian Jergens and his family was completed in July 2016 at their home in Hollister, Calif. Benedetti coordinated all of the work on the plumbing and electrical systems, equipment pad, decks and concrete forms. He also supervised the rebar installation, concrete finishing and masonry work, and built the pool equipment room (a 26' x 12' building) by himself.
Photo: Paolo Benedetti


Paolo Benedetti, a licensed swimming pool contractor and owner of Aquatic Technology Pool and Spa in Morgan Hill, Calif., spearheaded a pro bono construction project for an Army veteran who was severely injured while deployed in Afghanistan.

Mainly through Benedetti's efforts, Sgt. Brian Jergens, his wife and two sons now have a new swimming pool, spa, outdoor kitchen and children's playground in the backyard of their home in Hollister, Calif.

An important part of Jergens' rehabilitation has been swimming, and that is still the case today. Intially, Jergens had been using the pool at the Palo Alto Poly Trauma Center.

Benedetti donated about $10,000 of his own money toward the project, not including his labor, but it would not have been possible without the help of many other donors. Everything that was built for the Jergens family could easily have cost $300,000, he said.

His solicitations resulted in direct donations of the pool equipment, rebar, plumbing pipes and conduit, and the pro bono services of an excavation contractor. Benedetti also held fundraisers, which brought in enough money for the shotcrete, tile, coping, plaster, a pool cover, the playground equipment, drainage pipes, aggregates, gravel and fill sand. His fundraisers also paid for a loaner tractor and the services of the grading and concrete placement workers. "The list of donors is substantial and would take up two pages by itself," Benedetti said. "I solicited and acquired all of the donations of materials, labor, finished goods and some cash donations to complete this project. It truly was a community effort -- from around the country."

Over 50 firms contributed to the Jergens pool project.

"I coordinated all of the work parties for the plumbing, electrical, equipment pad installation, decks and concrete forms, rebar and concrete finishing, masonry installation and barbecue island," he said.

Benedetti also did the rough prep work and tractor grading, and built the pool equipment room himself.

A month after getting married, Jergens, an Army medic, was driving a Humvee that was struck by an improvised explosive device (IED) in 2011. Jergens lost both of his legs below the knee, suffered a severe brain injury, hearing loss, internal organ damage, a broken neck and a damaged right elbow.


As seen in LC/DBM magazine, November 2016.








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