If you were given a megaphone, what would you yell? Personally, I always want to yell “Bus driver, move that bus!”. That simple phrase has been made famous by Ty Pennington, who is the host of the popular ABC show, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.
All of the families that the show surprises have a story that will bring tears to your eyes.
The families chosen have to be deserving and in need of the makeover, and they must be the type that gives back to their community.
That brings me to the excitement that has been going on over the past week in Fayetteville, NC. Barbara Marshall, a former Navy officer that lives in Fayetteville, was chosen by the show to get an extreme makeover of her house. Ever since she retired from the Navy, her passion has been to care for women veterans. Her organization is called Steps-n-Stages Jubilee House. It is a shelter that she created to house homeless women veterans and their families. Before the makeover, the house was able to hold three women veterans and their children. It also served over 30 homeless women veterans seeking assistance each week.
The Extreme Makeover: Home Edition team came into town July 14th for the “Door Knock” to surprise Barbara. Ever since last Thursday, the Extreme team and hundreds of volunteers have been working non-stop to tear down and rebuild Barbara’s Jubilee House. When our organization found out about the event, we wanted to find a way to help aid in their efforts. After talking with the builder of the project, Blue Ridge Log Cabins (www.blueridgelogcabins.com), their biggest need at the time was morale boosters for the volunteers. These projects would not be successful without the hundreds of volunteers that give up their day and nights to work in the extreme heat to finish the house.
On Tuesday, July 19th, seven of us hopped in the Stormy van and made our way to Fayetteville. Our team included Stormy, three members of the Eye Care Associates Storm Squad, and two of our Canes Vision staff members. When we pulled into Fayetteville and walked up to the house, it was an amazing site to see.
It was over 100 degrees, and there were volunteers everywhere. They were working non-stop with smiles on their faces inside and outside of the house. We walked around handing out Carolina Hurricanes car clings, stickers, and tattoos to thank each volunteer for their efforts. We spoke with the President and Owner of Blue Ridge Log Cabins, Chip Smith, who has put in hours of work to prepare for the build of this home. He said the last couple of days have been the hardest due to the volunteers and skilled workers hitting a point of exhaustion. We also spoke with one of the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition designers, John Littlefield, who said that every person helping at the house was in need of morale, and he was thankful we were able to provide that for the group.
Our organization was also able to assist with the Heroes, Hearts, and Hard Hats event they had Tuesday night. We provided a Carolina Hurricanes replica stick signed by the 2010-2011 team to be included in the silent auction. The event was an additional way to raise money for Barbara and the Jubilee House. The Extreme team and volunteers will “Move That Bus” on Thursday, July 21st.
After seeing the community come together to help with the building of the Jubilee House, it was another reminder of how proud we are to be the NHL team in North Carolina. We are so blessed to have so many incredible military men and women that are based in Fayetteville that give up their lives to fight for our country. Barbara has given back to her country for the majority of her life, and she continues that pattern by caring for the women that need her most.
Thank you to all of the volunteers, Blue Ridge Log Cabins, and the Extreme Makeover staff that will leave their mark on Fayetteville and make a difference for years to come.