On any given day throughout the past week, about 500 people could be seen working on the house, said Frank Stehlik, a construction captain. At day 6, volunteering efforts are still going strong.
“For me it’s very rewarding and fulfilling,” volunteer Lois Gower said. “For what she [Kathleen] has done and that family has gone through, for me to just give back a little of my time is nothing in comparison. I wish I could do more.”
By 12:30 p.m., work was about 99% done, Stehlik said. The exterior looked like it was almost finished and the interior awaited furnishings. As the afternoon marches on, volunteers work to complete the remaining odds and ends.
“They’re just putting the rest of the windows in, in the back, and electrical, and paint,” spectator Ron Monroe said. “The furniture is later tonight.”
The front lawn has also become a beautiful part of the renovation. One of the girls requested that she have a garden, Monroe said, and volunteers have made sure she gets her wish. “They really went all-out on everything,” he added.
The hundreds of volunteering hands show just how much Extreme Makeover: Home Edition has brought together this community. “I told them I’m here till whenever you need me. If that means I’m here ‘til tomorrow morning, then I’m here ‘til tomorrow morning,” Gower said.
In addition to those sporting hardhats are the “behind the scenes” volunteers. “We’ve been stationed here all week, providing fire and EMS coverage around the clock, doing shifts,” said Anthony Todaro, Assistant Chief of East Setauket Fire Department. The combined efforts of this protection plus many generous food donations are keeping everyone safe and full.
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