Community rallies to help 2 Shelby Co. veterans get a new home

Community rallies to help 2 Shelby Co. veterans get a new home
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff

SHELBY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - With Veterans Day next week, an East Texas community has come together to help two heroes. The two veterans were on the verge of homelessness after they decided they could no longer live in their severely deteriorated mobile home. Then the Shelby County community stepped up to get them a safe, new home to live in.

The house was causing quite a spectacle as it made its way through Shelby County Friday. It's the product of months of hard work and fundraising by the community to benefit a father and son who both served our country.

"This house was literally donated to this project and I can't thank them enough. The people of Shelby County are awesome," said Sherry Riley, Shelby County Veterans Services Officer.

Kenneth Johnson Sr. and Ken Johnson Jr. served in the United States Air Force and United States Army, respectively.

"This is our home," Johnson Sr. said.

The veterans were living in a severely dilapidated mobile home on their family property until now.

"The house we were living in was killing us day-by-day and [this house] means that we'll live a little bit longer," Johnson Sr. said.

The Johnson's are on a fixed income and couldn't repair their old house and were on the verge of being homeless.

"In the front yard in a tent," Johnson Jr. said. "Under a bridge in a box some place, so it has literally saved us from homelessness," Johnson Sr. said.

"I'm going to name this place Casa Milagro because it means miracle house," Johnson Sr. said. "And last year, I told him that it would be a miracle if we didn't have to abandon the house and leave then this happened."

Riley says it was truly a community effort.

"When you ask God to send his people to help you, he sends the very best," Riley said.

"We're looking forward to a better life," Johnson Sr. said.

In fact, if it weren't for all the donated labor and money, it would have cost about $150,000 to make the Johnson Project happen.

"Thank you Shelby County and God bless," Johnson Jr. said.

"Yes. Thank you. Thank you," Johnson Sr. said.

Bass Mobile Home Transport and Fuller Mobile Home Services spent the entire day working to get the Johnson's into their home.

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