Home Depot Volunteers Renovate Veterans' Houses To Honor Veterans Day

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

Missouri volunteers came together to update a disabled Korean War veteran’s home and built a wheelchair ramp.

Volunteers from Home Depot and HopeBUILDERS Home Repair spent all day Thursday working on Joe and Margaret Underwood’s Kansas City home.

The couple lived in the house for more than 40 years, and it was in desperate need of repairs.

Joe, a retired Marine, suffers from Alzheimer’s and uses a wheelchair to get around.

“Our activities are fairly limited,” Margaret told WDAF-TV.

Volunteers cleaned gutters, landscaped and built a wheelchair ramp, without which Joe says he wouldn’t be able to get out of the house.

“Oh yeah, excited about getting outside,” said Joe.

The couple is looking forward to getting out together again.

“We can’t get out to the car right now so, I think I can get him in the wheelchair and roll him out there and if we can get in the car I can take him to all kinds of places,” said Margaret.

“We’re providing a way that he can get out and about in the community,” explained Kevin Trembly with the Home Depot.

Joe is one of 350 veterans that Home Depot has chosen to help between Sept. 11 and Nov. 11, which is Veterans Day.

“It’s almost like winning the lottery or something like that,” Margaret said.

“Every year we choose one veteran in Kansas City and really try to help them,” Trembly said.

“Oh, I’m impressed,” said Joe. “I didn’t think they’d be able to do it with all that rain, but they did a perfect job.”

“I can’t even believe this is true, I feel like I’m in a dream or I wake up and this never happened,” Margaret added. “I wish I could give them a big pot of chili and maybe fix them some coffee but they won’t take it.”

Two Michigan veterans are getting a home makeover this weekend with the help of a Port Huron nonprofit, We Heart This City, and a grant from Home Depot.

“We can go there for a day and a half and change their world,” We Heart This City executive director Mark Wargo told The Times Herald.

Wargo also said if enough volunteers show, they’ll take on more homes in the neighborhood.

Sources: WDAF-TV, The Times Herald

Image Credit: WDAF-TV Screenshot, Wikipedia