Celebration of Service restores freedom for Milan veteran

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As volunteers build a ramp for a disabled veteran on Friday, it's a reminder about helping those who served.

"There's an old saying, freedom isn't free," said volunteer Cheryl Davis.  "And, it's very true."

Davis is pitching in with co-workers from Bettendorf's Home Depot store.

Home Depot partnered with Rebuilding Together Quad Cities to make the connection.

They'll spend the day on this project.  For her, it's just the right thing to do.

"Anything we can do for them when they come home, I think we need to take any opportunity to do it," she said.

Philip Carman is a Korean War veteran and Farmall retiree.

But at age 86, he's unable to get outside easily these days.

His daughter, Teri Sutherland,  knows all about the challenges.

"He needs to get up and be able to walk and get out of his house," she said.

This Celebration of Service campaign is reaching out to veterans all over the country like Philip Carman.

It's truly a labor of love.

"It's rewarding for everyone," said Home Depot volunteer Jason Paskvan.

Paskvan is a veteran himself.

"It's a personal thing for all of us," he said.

And it takes a personal touch to build this ramp.

Each step sends a powerful message about freedom.

"It's going to give him better access to health care and simple things like just being able to sit outside and be in his yard," he said.

It's quite a quick transformation.

"Whoa, what happened while I was gone?" Sutherland asked.

The ramp is a fitting tribute at this house.

"This proves to the Quad Cities that there's people out there to help veterans," Sutherland said.

A better life with freedom.

"I hope it means a better life for him," Davis concluded.


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