Camp Shelby Volunteers Help Rebuild A Biloxi Home - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Camp Shelby Volunteers Help Rebuild A Biloxi Home

A few good men trade weapons of war for the tools of construction.  

"Well, there are a few good carpenters," says Sgt. Joe Baxter. "But we just have to keep an eye open and get it done."

What these soldiers from Camp Shelby have done, says Baxter, is turn what was just a shell of a house into a nearly completed home for Biloxi resident Mary Clark. And they did it in just four weeks.

"The inside was gutted out and we've got everything done except some plumbing and electrical," says Baxter. "We've done several houses with Habitat up in Hattiesburg, and they found this one down here with St.Thomas Church and now we're down here doing this one."  

Ms. Clark, who is disabled, watches the progress on her new house from her FEMA trailer.  

"Yeah, she's itching," says Clark's daughter, Courtney Beauvais. "She looks through the window every once an a while. She's like, 'I can't wait to get in.'"

Beauvais says nothing was left of her original house.

"We had nothing left but the front and back steps, and we couldn't even find the house. She lost everything."

Clark's new house is being built on the footprint of her old home, using what's left of another home that also took quite a beating from Katrina.  

"It was in this vacant lot and we had it moved over here, and it looked horrible," says Beauvais. "The storm had done so much damage and they have come in and done a wonderful job."

For the Shelby soldiers, it's a job well worth their best effort.  

"It feels good to get somebody back in their house, because there's so many houses down here that need working on," says Baxter.

by Don Culpepper

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