Well, folks, there it is -- our brand-new home!!!! Isn't it GOREGOUS?! I think it is -- especially so because this isn't just any ole house ~ my Soldiers, Robert Stokely, Marcia Kincaid (mother of fallen Hero Aaron Kincaid), several Patriot Guard Riders, multitudes of people from my church and multitudes of people from our community worked VERY hard on this house...they literally poured their heart & soul into this home for me. Knowing that my soldiers (and friends) did so much for me... well, it's an awesome, humbling thing. I am still shocked and in a daze!!!! What nobody knew is that for MONTHS I've been SECRETLY praying that God would make a way for us to own a home... I knew it would take a miracle... but I never in a million years expected THIS!!!! GOD IS SOOO GOOD! :)
Television show rewards patriot for work
By Robbie Schwartz
Published February 7, 2007LOGANVILLE — There was no shortage of those willing to help. There was a shortage, though, of tissues when it was all said and done. Last week, a crew from the nationally syndicated
television show “HomeTeam” descended on the town to turn one resident’s dream into a reality. With an outpouring of support from the local community, the American dream came to fruition for Kathy and Jeff Orr as they were given the keys to their first house. “I’ve never seen something this incredible in my ife,” Jeff Orr said to the crowd gathered on his front lawn Sunday. Kathy Orr as too overwhelmed to offer words immediately to the hundreds that had gathered.Beginning on Wednesday, the crew from “HomeTeam” descended on a house on XXXXXXXX and hit the ground running. The show is dedicated to helping a deserving family get a leg up on life by renovating and furnishing a house as well as paying for the closing costs and the first year’s mortgage for the family. They solicit help from friends and family, and in this particular case overwhelmed by a community who wanted to do their part for the Orrs. “Can I talk while I paint?” asked Sharon Fenneran Saturday morning while working on painting a door frame. “They have been giving so much out, now they are getting back 10-fold,” Fenneran said as to why she was volunteering. “This is such a great opportunity for them.”The sentiment of a deserving family echoed throughout the house. Kathy Orr, or “Mama Kat” as she is affectionately known, is well known for her efforts to collect cards — be it for whatever holiday — to send to troops overseas. For Christmas she collected more than 19,000 cards to send overseas. Orr is also actively involved in soldier “adoption” programs to write and send e-mails to soldiers overseas. Working full time and going to school, as well as a mother of four, Kathy Orr spends what little spare time she has sending weekly letters and care packages. “They don’t call her Mama Kat for nothing,” said Patriot Guard rider Todd Walker. “This woman has love that is literally felt in every corner of the world. I’m so excited for her and her family. I can’t think of anyone who needs or is more deserving of a step up than Kat.”In addition, both Kathy and Jeff Orr came to the aid of a neighbor who is
a veteran and was having a tough time making ends meet. Jeff Orr continually pays the veteran a visit as he works to become a child advocate.All of this and more is a testament to the good nature of one family, and all the cause the producers of “HomeTeam” selected the Orrs. “It is really an amazing story. What we were really impressed with was what she does for the soldiers and still does so much for her community,” said Enae Boone, vice president of production for “HomeTeam.” “At the end of the day, we know that we helped someone. This is very rewarding television. And the level of support that this community has shown, I am hard-pressed to think of any other location where we have been where we have seen this much support.” [emphasis added by me! Yay Loganville!]Despite hundreds of people helping and messages being posted and e-mails sent to rally support, the best-kept secret in town remained a secret right up until the last minute. Under the guise of taking part in a documentary being done on the Patriot Guard, the Orrs piled in their car Sunday for what they thought was just another ride. Stepping out of the car, Kathy Orr was overcome with emotion. Little did she know waiting patiently down the street were the huddled masses, many who helped work on the house and others there to show their support for the newest Loganville residents. “I can’t wait to see their faces,” said Jean Malcom, who with her husband Ben and many others from The Orchard Church, volunteered their time to support members of their congregation. “Kathy and Jeff are such giving people and are such a great part of the community. They give so much to their community, now the community was able to give something back to them.”Once inside the house for a tour, those who gathered down the street moved to the front lawn and gathered around a flagpole in the front yard. When the door opened and the family stepped outside, they did so to a resounding yell of, “Welcome home!”In addition to the fanfare, the Orrs were also presented with a ceremonial key to the city.But with all of the emotions involved in the whole ordeal, the penultimate experience came when Robert Stokely, father of Loganville soldier Michael Stokely, who was killed in Iraq in 2005, had a special dedication ceremony. Orr’s dedication to soldiers, and in particular to the young Stokely, was recognized as the father of the fallen soldier opened up a small bag and sprinkled among the rocks of the flagpole sand taken from the road in Iraq where the soldier was killed.“This day, this community, HomeTeam and all of those who had a hand in this, we cannot say enough to thank you,” Orr said. For everyone involved, it was their way of saying thank you to the Orrs for what they do. And much like the Orrs, there was no need of gratitude in return. The show is slated to air [locally] at noon [check local listings for time in your area] on [the week of February 24 on WGN]. Those interested are asked to check their local listings.