By Lauren White, RCS Reporter.
After joining the United States Army just after graduating high school, Loretta Grant, “spent three years in the military, serving in combat in Mogadishu, Somalia, and specializing in mortuary affairs,” according to Fox8 reporting.
Now residing in Maple Heights, Ohio, the roof on Loretta’s home was leaking and failing, causing damage to the inside of her home. As a way to thank her for her service, a new roof was installed on her home at no cost to her.
Loretta’s roof donation was part of the Roof Deployment Project, which is a nationwide initiative Owens Corning® started in 2016 to offer free roofs to U.S. veterans in need. Beginning three years ago, Owens Corning partners with local contractors to complete the job. Dave Sbraccia, sales manager at Owens Corning, disclosed that, “The idea is to pay it forward, a big thank you to our veterans...A lot of us get to live a charmed life. That’s at an expense, and that expense is through sacrifice.” To date, over 170 military members have received a new roof.
Crews from Absolute Roofing started construction on Loretta’s new roof at 8:30 a.m. and finished by 5 p.m. the same day! “I’m pretty excited...It’s a big weight off my shoulders. It means a lot that somebody is willing to do that for me,” Loretta shared.
NARI Cares (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) and Purple Heart Homes were instrumental in helping Loretta get a new roof. NARI Cares is a community outreach program that helps make repairs for those in need who either couldn’t afford the repairs or couldn’t complete the repairs themselves. According to Fox8, “She [Loretta] was selected and approved as the recipient through partnership with Purple Heart Homes.” This organization was founded in 2008 by two combat wounded veterans who sustained injuries in Iraq in 2004, John Gallina and the late Dale Beatty. They work hard to assist veterans in their housing needs, whether that’s building a wheelchair ramp or providing homeownership opportunities for younger veterans.
The roofing materials for Loretta’s roof were donated by the Owens Corning Foundation, while the labor was donated by Absolute Roofing and Construction. This was the second roof replacement Chris Kamis, the president of Absolute Roofing, completed through the Roof Deployment Project. “We’ve been very successful in the community, and we have to give back to those that need our help...And it’s so great to help out, especially military veterans who give so much for us and our country. I don’t believe military veterans get enough,” Chris shared in his interview with Fox8.
Dallas Conrad of Owens Corning is also a veteran. According to Dallas, the project is starting to grow, and more roofing projects like this one are planned for this year. “I’m proud to work for a company and have partners like this that help our veterans,” Dallas shared. “...There are times you feel like bursting into tears, because you see what you’ve done for homeowners, for military veterans, and how much they appreciate that...Because there’s no way we can repay what the military has done for us...to keep us safe...you can’t put a price on that.”
The Roof Deployment Project is one way for Owens Corning to show their gratitude and to honor the veterans who served our country. Providing Loretta with a new roof was a rewarding and heartwarming experience for the crews and those involved in helping it happen. Loretta won’t have to worry about the financial burden of replacing her roof, nor will she have to worry about future damage to her home.
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