Long Beach Woman Needs Roof Help - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

08/26/05

Long Beach Woman Needs Roof Help

An elderly Long Beach woman, on a fixed income, desperately needs help with a roof.

Lillian Harley was supposed to get her roof repaired a year ago. But the person who promised to help, took the money and left the roof a mess.

A good friend is now determined to make things right.

Instead of all new shingles, Lillian Harley's roof is covered with tar paper only. That, along with rotting wood in spots, isn't enough to keep out the weather.

"Oh, it just rains. I have to set my garbage cans so I can catch it and then I dip the water out after it starts raining you know, and throw it out," said Harley.

Buckets and garbage cans are now permanent fixtures throughout the house.

"When it rains, I can't lift it. I take a small bucket and dip it out," she explained.

The worst spot may be the back bathroom. A giant hole in the ceiling goes straight to the roof.

"Oh it leaks, oh it leaks in here! Sometimes it be almost full and I have to dip it out," said the elderly woman.

Violet Riley wants to do something about the soggy situation. She's determined to help her friend of nearly 30 years.

"The only thing she gets is a little social security check. And that's all she has. She's got a mortgage. She's still paying 300 dollars a month on this house. And she only gets 432 dollars a month for social security," said Riley.

"This lady is what the world is made of. Just a good person, who never had a break in her life. Never had a break," said the friend.

There are many needs similar to this one, but unfortunately there are no easy answers and no single phone number to call. Often times, such need is met by caring friends like Violet Riley, who's willing to get involved and ask others to help out.

"Let's see if we can't get her some help," said Riley.

"Sure, sure would be glad. I sure would appreciate it," said her longtime friend.

She'd appreciate being able to face a forecast of rain, without worrying about keeping up with the leaks.

There's a need for both construction materials and volunteers to help fix Miss Harley's roof.

If you can donate supplies, or are willing to help out, you can leave your name and number with Steve. His number is 896-2580.

By Steve Phillips

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