He was looking forward to returning home from Okinawa, Japan, to his fixer-upper home in Suisin City, Calif. However, when Bernardo pulled up to the home he had purchased in January, he saw it had already been fixed up.
Bernardo had asked former fellow Marine Jeremy Epperson to watch over the home until he returned from Japan, according to KTVU. Instead, Epperson went above and beyond the call of duty.
So in just 10 days, Epperson, the Jimmy Doolittle Center, and numerous contractors and volunteers painted, installed new floors, redid the kitchen and landscaped the property.
“I didn’t think it was right for a person who retired, given 21 years and 50 percent of their pay to come back and spend every cent that they saved on fixing up a home,” Epperson told KTVU of his friend.
Tears immediately follow from Bernardo, who said there were other people who deserved the amazing surprise he got more than he did.
“Twenty-one years I gave serving our country, and if I had 21 more years to give, I would, because I love this country,” Bernardo told reporters.