Habitat for Humanity gives back to a CI Veteran

MANITO, Il -  A nationwide program aimed at repairing homes of veterans is helping a family in central Illinois. It's one of the goals of Habitat for Humanity to help veterans struggling in their own homes. Organizers say service to our country lasts a lifetime, and habitat wants to give back anyway it can.

68 year old Coast Guard veteran Stephen Roripaugh and his wife, recently adopted their 5 year old nephew, Wesley. As their family grew, conditions in their Manito house worsened a leaky roof, on one side, covered by tarp on the other.

It's just been a battle inside the house, you can't do anything that you might want to improve it in anyway, it's just been a never ending battle,” said Roripaugh.

After applying for Habitat for Humanity's Veteran Repair Program, Roripaugh felt a weight lifted off his shoulders

“When they called back and said I was approved it was a godsend,” added Roripaugh. 

For those involved, improving Roripaugh's house was a small way to give back to someone who gave so much.

“We are doing critical and non critical repair for veterans and they change our lives so it's just an acceptable thing for us to change theirs,” said Lea Anne Schmidgall, Exec. Directorof HFH.

Owens Corning Roofing and its network of independent platinum contractors donated roofing materials and labor to replace roof shingles to provide a safer environment for Wesley to grow up in.

“He has a place to grow, this is going to change his life,” said  he's seeing something that he could grow up and maybe be able to give back as well,” said Joe Kordesich

For the Roripaughs, it's a fresh start that almost left them speechless.



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