This past year I was provided with the opportunity to serve my community by helping with a new house build for a veteran who unfortunately lost his home due to a fire. A volunteer group, “Armorbearers,” reached out to my Army ROTC organization to invite us to help out with an organization called “Operation Finally Home.” Mr. Jack Walker had lost his home and possessions to a fire and we felt it was only right to help him rebuild a home because of the sacrifices he gave for his country.
Building the home was a great experience. I had prior knowledge on how to paint, drywall, caulk, and other handy skills, so it was great to put it to use in the service of others. We came out on four different days, working dawn until dusk helping out with various projects. We also helped set up for the community to swing by to write “Notes of Love,” leaving notes on the studs and inner-workings of the home. One of the coolest things about that job was to be able to work along side Mr. Walker who took on a lot of work to help out with the build and design of his home. As he worked he told us stories of his service and advice for us as future Army Officers. I learned a lot about seeing hard work to the end, and it bears amazing results. Mr. Walker showed me how effective the military aspect of adapting and overcoming any situation can be especially helpful in this crazy past year we all experienced.
There are many more opportunities of service like this that can be found on campus. Just reach out to the Student Veteran Center if you’re interested!
– Blog post author Jake Maxon is majoring in criminal justice, having just completed his second year at Southern Miss.