Home Depot continued in its mission of Doing More For Veterans after several volunteers recently showed up at one local Marine's home to make some much-needed repairs.
Vietnam veteran Kenneth Kendall and his wife, Sally, moved from Mojave to their Tehachapi home on Mission Street about a year ago. Kenneth joined the Marine Corps from 1968 to 1970, and then continued to serve in the Reserves for several more years.
"We do what we call a Celebration of Service every year through Home Depot, and we try to find a veteran to do something nice for them, something for their house," said Steve Dickinson, assistant store manager.
Dickinson said he reached out to Alex Athans at the VFW, who connected him with the Kendalls.
Said Dickinson, "He (Athans) told me about his backstory, and about how he served in Vietnam."
After learning that the Kendalls needed some minor home repairs, Dickinson said he and Tracy Bomar, captain of the veteran project, called upon the couple to see what they could do to help.
"Together, we created a list, but then added some stuff," Dickinson said.
The Kendalls said they were very grateful to receive Home Depot's help to prepare their home for the coming winter.
"Basically, we were trying to do some things ourselves, but he can't climb and he can't get around real well," Sally said of her husband. "There was a lot of things that we couldn't do, and economically, we couldn't do right now at all."
On the morning of Oct. 21, a crew of Home Depot volunteers plus two other local volunteers showed up at the Kendall residence and got to work, painting their surrounding fence and backyard shed, replacing rain gutters along the home, and adding rain barrels to conserve water.
In addition to Dickinson and Bomar, Home Depot volunteers included Pamela Dileo, Savannah Kolb, Cheryl Ellis, Angelea Murillo, Herlinda Watt and Sandy Mello, in addition to other community volunteers Stanley Schmidkunz and Joanne Thompson.
Sally said she cried after learning Home Depot offered to help.
"She was crying today, and hugging me," Dickinson said. "I like doing this kind of stuff. It's a big part of why I like working at Home Depot. One of our core values is giving back to the community."
The Kendalls thanked all the volunteers who took time out of their day to assist in the repairs.
"Everybody at Home Depot were really marvelous," said Kenneth.
"It was almost like they were family, for the way they treated us," added Sally.
Funding for the project came from Home Depot's corporate offices.