United States Air Force Captain Tonya Andrews was diagnosed with service related multiple sclerosis, resulting in paralysis. After seven years of rehab and physical therapy, Andrews can walk short distances.
Born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, Andrews lived in many different places around the world as her father led a very successful career in the United States Marine Corps. Andrews was very close with her parents and younger sister, and as a child she was an avid reader and animal lover.
Andrews had always felt called to serve in the military, joining the ROTC program in 1998, then the United States Air Force in 2002 after the attacks on September 11, 2001. Andrews joined the Air Force with aspirations to see the world and make a difference. During time in the Air Force, she served with the 388th Aircraft Maintenance Squad and the 386th Expeditionary MX Group. Andrews would go on to earn several awards and accolades including but not limited to, Hill AF Base Logistics Officer of the Year and 308th Armament Systems Wing CGO of the Year. Andrews enjoyed the camaraderie of being in the Air Force, and sharing a common goal with her fellow military service members. Andrews deployed twice to Kuwait, and eventually medically retired in August of 2008.
Andrews currently lives in Argyle, Texas where she spends her time reading, doing physical therapy, and Equine therapy. She is also involved with Paralyzed Veterans of America. Andrews looks forward to gaining more independence and being able to spend time with friends and family. Andrews recognizes that she would not be where she is today without the love and support of her parents, sister, Deanna, and her service dog, Herman. Andrews looks forward to regaining her independence and improving her quality of life by utilizing the specially adapted features in her new Smart Home.