Habitat breaks ground on home for local veteran

Published 4:53 pm Monday, July 10, 2017

On Saturday, a group of friends and church members gathered with Steve Messina to help him celebrate the ground breaking for construction on his Habitat home.

Holston Habitat for Humanity hosted the special ground breaking ceremony for Messina on Saturday morning at 207 Parkway Blvd.

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Messina, a U.S. Navy Veteran who served during the Vietnam era, is excited to begin work on building his new home.

“I’d like to thank all the people who are going to play a part in building the house, all the volunteers, and the staff,” Messina said.

As part of the Habitat program, Messina said he went through classes covering a variety of things a homeowner needs to know — topics such as budgeting and proper home maintenance.

“You can tell Habitat really cares,” Messina said. “I know God has brought me here and this is all his work.”

Joining Messina for the ground breaking were members of his “church family” at Sinking Creek Baptist Church including his pastor, Rev. Jayson Hoagland.

“My church family is really going to be involved in the build,” Messina said.

Several representatives from Holston Habitat were on hand for the ground breaking as were other Habitat families who came to show their support for Messina.

“One of the neat things about Habitat is we really become a family,” said Art Pearce, Director of Holston Habitat. “We work together on each other’s homes.”

Messina’s construction project is a Habitat Community Build, with an open invitation for individuals and groups, churches and businesses to volunteer with construction or to provide food for volunteers.

“We can’t build this without volunteers,” said Steve Clark, Construction Manager for Holston Habitat. “We have slots open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday throughout the build.”

Clark encouraged people to sign up to volunteer with construction and to encourage their co-workers, friends, and church members to sign up as well.

Eddie Bales, construction supervisor, will be on site every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday from July 27 through mid-October, directing the work of volunteers.

Those wishing to volunteer are asked to contact Holston Habitat Volunteer Manager Mandy Penz at 423-239-7689 extension 800 to sign up. Volunteers can also sign up online by visiting the Holston Habitat website at www.holstonhabitat.org and clicking on the “Volunteer” tab.