Marshall and Lukan first met as a result of their shared interest in helping Veterans who were suffering from the trauma of war. They reconnected in the early spring of 2016. Marshall had recently begun working at the Federal Health Care (FHCC) in North Chicago, IL, He shared his interest in Horticultural Therapy with a recreation therapist working with Veterans with PTSD, and she expressed an interest in incorporating Horticultural Therapy into her program. Marshall quickly contacted Lukan. The two were able to acquire 3 garden plots and all the necessary equipment from the Liberty Prairie Foundation, and soon Veterans were coming to work in the Prairie Crossing Community Garden in Grayslake one day a week.
At the end of the summer, over 100 pounds of vegetables were harvested by the Veterans and donated to local food pantries. The program was considered a success, and GVH was registered as a nonprofit with the State of Illinois in December 2016.