Halfway point reached in home rebuild for Forrest County disabled veteran

Updated: Jul. 16, 2020 at 5:25 PM CDT
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HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Volunteers have reached the halfway point in rebuilding a house for Jack Walker, a Forrest County disabled veteran who lost his home in a fire two years ago.

“We have come a long way, considering the atmosphere we’re working under,” said Ron Laabs, board chairman for Armorbearers, the group that is coordinating the rebuilding effort. “It was a snail’s pace at first, but we’re picking it up. A lot of local companies and individuals and even out-of-state personnel are even helping out, so we’re ecstatic.”

Laabs and Armorbearers have been working on the Walker home for several months.

Walker, a Mississippi National Guard veteran, was disabled in 2005 when his Humvee was hit by an IED in Iraq.

He lost his first home in a fire in April of 2018.

Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and lots of rain, volunteers have completed the framing of the house.

But, Laabs says much more work will need to be done.

“There are some things, brick, somebody to hang the sheet rock, HVAC, those three things right there, we’re still in need of, so if somebody wants to donate their time to come do that for a worthy veteran, we’d appreciate it,” Laabs said.

Laabs is hoping the house can be finished by October.

You can learn more about helping on the Walker home by going to armorbearers.org.

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