Central Texas family has special Thanksgiving

A Lockhart family was living in terrible and unsafe conditions but the community rallied together and began renovating their home.

Old photos of the Torres home in Lockhart show the unlivable conditions they dwelled in.

“Infestation issues, mold on all the walls, and on half of the house with literally no roof on it, wood rot,” said Joel Gammage as he described the home.

Gammage who lives a few houses down, saw the conditions the family was living in and wanted to do something.

“It really shook me,” said Gammage.

Two weeks ago, he rounded up some volunteers and they began putting new insulation, plumbing, and patching up the roof.

“A lot of people including myself had actually thought the house was abandoned because of the condition of the roof, it was deteriorating,” said Gammage.

The goal was to have the house in good enough shape to have family and friends over for thanksgiving in the living room, and they did just that.  The family of three siblings in their 50s did not want to go on camera but tell us the problems began 10 years ago. The mold got so bad, that their brother Andrew caught pneumonia twice.

“You can tell that it wasn't because of them not wanting to do something about it. It's just when somethings gets that severe and you do not have any money to fix it what do you do”? said Gammage.

Thanksgiving is about being kind to one another and Gammage says that's what inspired him.

“When you look at all the things that have been going on, it's really east to let that shake you and to lose your faith, not only in your community but in people's sense of humanity,” said Gammage.

The Torres family hasn't had a thanksgiving inside this home in eighteen years. Gammage and his crew have broken the cycle. They hope they can finish everything by Christmas.

“With the progress we've made in two weeks, I think we can do it,” said Gammage.

If you’d like to help call Gammage  at 512-657-4616

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