header image

[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Sunny
Sunny
92°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
August 15
1849 - Eight-pound gold nugget found in San Feliciano Canyon (Val Verde/Piru area) [story]
map


Homeowner Joshua Murphy

Neighbors on normally peaceful Magnolia Glen Drive in Saugus woke up Saturday to armies of volunteers invading their block.

Football teams, ROTC students, members of youth leadership groups, bikers wearing black leather – their full-sized American flags proudly waving as they pulled into formation, legions of workers volunteering for their companies, set apart by their familiar colors (orange for Home Depot, blue for The Gas Co.), every person there with a single purpose – to roll up their sleeves and rehabilitate the home of Joshua and Windie Murphy.

To use the term “historic” to describe the turnout and effort would be an understatement. SCV Habitat For Heroes, a project of Habitat For Humanity, San Fernando/Santa Clarita Valley will facilitate the reconstruction and repair of 10 homes belonging to veterans of the Iraq/Afghanistan wars during the next twelve months, with more to follow for all Santa Clarita vets in need of assistance.

Volunteers scrape off old paint

The Murphy home was the first of the series; Joshua Murphy served two tours of duty with the Army in Iraq. He suffers from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and other injuries from a mortar blast that hit his guard tower in Iraq and is unable to work. Windie has become his full-time caretaker. SCV Habitat for Heroes gathered resources and manpower, bringing goods, services and about 300 volunteers to the home Saturday morning.

The laundry list of repairs was long – replacing windows, painting the house inside and out, installing solar panels, landscaping the front and back yards, rehabbing a bathroom and some of the kitchen, replacing appliances and making the house more energy efficient.

Employees from The Home Depot prepare to give the Murphy house a makeover

The project may be headed by Habitat For Humanity, but would not be possible without corporate support from companies like Home Depot and The Gas Company and sponsors such as Champion Windows, Rowland Air, Green Convergence, Creative Design Interiors, Advantage Disposal and Recycling, Stay Green, Inc., KHTS AM-1220 and others.

Along with hard goods, many sponsors provided supervisors for the project in their specialty areas, as well as many workers who volunteered their talents to work side-by-side with community members of all ages and disciplines.

Kevin McKidd from the TV series "Grey's Anatomy" helps install handicapped railing in the master shower

Setup began before the sun came up; signs were erected in front of the Murphy’s home, check-in tables and parking cones went up. Shuttles from Grace Baptist Church brought workers who parked at the church; volunteers signed up for their chosen area – painting, yard work, plumbing, and more.

After being fed by Corner Bakery, volunteers gathered for an official ceremony. Wayne Colmer, Chairman of the board of Habitat for Humanity SF/SCV welcomed the workers. “This is the inauguration of our Habitat affiliate’s program hot ank our servicemen and women for the sacrifices they have made for our country.

“This may be the first home, but it’s not the last,” Colmer said. “Our projects take a village of local community volunteers to complete.”

SCV Habitat For Heroes Co-Chair Carl Goldman said that when word about the project started getting out into the community, volunteers started coming out of the woodwork.

“It’s really no surprise that there are so many people here. Once we put the call out, we had to turn people away.”

Exterior gets a brush-up courtesy of The Home Depot on Newhall Ranch Road

Goldman introduced the Murphys, who stood next to the stage with their dog, Princess.

“We know that this critical home modification is only one way that we can pay back our veteran and that it will never amount to the sacrifices Joshua has made for all of us. We only hope that Joshua and his family can accept this as a symbol of our gratitude for him and what he has done for our country.”

Michael Gallagher, Senior Vice President of The Gas Company began with thanks to the volunteers, adding that the Gas Co. is looking for veterans to assist and asking the crowd to pass along the company’s policy of giving veterans an advantage when they are job-seeking.

“We’ve been working with Habitat for Humanity for awhile to do a little bit of what we should be doing as a company,” he said.

Kim Cherney, the manager of the Home Depot on Newhall Ranch Road that provided most of the appliances and hardware for the project as well as manpower, said that the company’s foundation is dedicated to helping veterans, budgeting $30 million to help families.

New solar panels will help cut the Murphys' electricity bills

The ceremony was not without a celebrity touch with two stars of prime time adding their perspective; Kevin McKidd from “Grey’s Anatomy” and Mark Valley from “Harry’s Law.” Valley is a graduate of West Point and a veteran of Operation Desert Storm. He thanked the volunteers and acknowledged the Hollywood Veterans group that had accompanied him to the build. He joked that he wasn’t sure what they would put him to work doing, since “there aren’t any jobs where I can stand around with my hands on my hips and supervise.”

McKidd, who received a PRISM Award for his portrayal of an Iraq veteran doctor who is dealing with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, said he was there to do a little tile work and hopefully set an example for his children.

“Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a psychiatric condition, not just for those who have been in combat,” he said. “The psychological damage that such experiences cause make it very challenging just to hold down a job or to have any kind of relationship with others.

“I’m one of the lucky ones. Thanks to the security provided by real-life soldiers, who put themselves in harm’s way every single day, I just go to work in Hollywood and pretend to be a doctor who suffers from this ailment.  I hope the role I play in ‘Grey’s Anatomy’ in a small way brings some awareness to this huge mental health challenge that our veterans are dealing with.”

“If there’s anything we can do to serve those who served and given us so much, we have to do it. So when I was asked to be here, of course, I felt honored to help out,” he continued. “I’m here with my wife and kids, I hope as we build today, we can learn from each other and teach our kids that giving back should be a part of our lives and I just want to thank all the veterans for everything they’ve done.”

Assemblyman Cameron Smyth said that the turnout did not surprise him and gave him a sense of extreme pride – and some bragging rights.

“Sometimes you get a little frustrated when you turn on the TV and you think people are really questioning the direction of our country, but then you see the sacrifice that our own community members make every day and their lives are changed forever because they’re willing to put it on the line for all of us.”

“It gives me goosebumps and reminds me and reinforces my faith, in this country, certainly coming here and seeing this turnout, my faith in this community. When you see this turnout, it gives me something to brag about when I go back to the Capitol in a couple of months, because I assure you, no other district, no other community in the state is stepping up like Santa Clarita. I know my colleagues in Sacramento are probably tired of hearing me brag, but I’m gonna do it and tell them, “if you don’t like it, why don’t you do that in your community. Step up because we’re going to keep doing it to support our heroes and support our community.”

As the speeches and presentations came to a close, the volunteers anxious to get busy descended on the Murphy’s house, scraping, sanding, digging, clearing and rolling up their sleeves to show their appreciation for the couple’s sacrifice. It was a giant donation of sweat equity into a home made comfortable for one of our community’s heroes.

Four more projects are planned through SCV Habitat for Heroes; homes approved to receive refurbishments include:

* A Vietnam veteran who served in the Air Force, recently disabled and living alone.

* A young widow whose husband served in the Army and died in Iraq, with a 5-year old son.

* A Navy veteran who served in the Korean War who is 100 percent disabled.

* A 34-year old Army veteran who served in Kosovo, he has two children and is low-income.

Anyone interested in volunteering for future projects should contact Habitat for Humanity at 818-884-8808 or visit www.habitatscv.org.

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

1 Comment

  1. This is representative of what America has always been about; I am so proud of my fellow Americans who took part in this effort. I am especially proud that my own niece, Stacy, and her husband, DJ, are involved through DJ’s business, Green Convergence; my hat is off to you and my heart is overflowing. Our veteran’s deserve all that we, the people they fought to defend, can provide.

Leave a Comment


SCV NONPROFIT LINKS

NONPROFIT HEADLINES
Monday, Aug 15, 2022
Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley will hold their third annual golf tournament beginning noon on Monday, Oct. 24.
Friday, Aug 12, 2022
Are you worried about getting diabetes? Have you been told that you have pre-diabetes? One out of three American adults has prediabetes.
Thursday, Aug 11, 2022
As local students get ready to head back to class for the new school year, your Salvation Army Santa Clarita Corps wants to ensure they have the supplies and resources necessary for success.
Thursday, Aug 11, 2022
The Rancho Camulos National Historic Landmark Presents: "Sundays at the Landmark" on Sunday, Aug. 28, with Dave Berg. He will present "Stories to Share.
Thursday, Aug 11, 2022
The WiSH Education Foundation's much-anticipated Cocktails on the Roof event is back for the community to enjoy on Saturday, Nov. 19, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Subaru of Valencia campus.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
Family Promise of Santa Clarita Valley will hold their third annual golf tournament beginning noon on Monday, Oct. 24.
Oct. 24: Family Promise SCV Annual Golf Tournament
Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital will open its first primary care practice on the hospital campus on Monday, Aug. 15.
Henry Mayo Opens First Primary Care Practice on Hospital Campus
Heads Up! The city of Santa Clarita and the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station urge parents to practice "safe pedestrian skills."
Parents Urged to Practice Back-to-School Safety
1849 - Eight-pound gold nugget found in San Feliciano Canyon (Val Verde/Piru area) [story]
map
1986 - Canyon Country's Mitchell adobe demolished; components salvaged & later rebuilt at Heritage Junction [story]
Mitchell adobe
1961 - First Mass celebrated at new Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church (3rd building) in Newhall. Cardinal McIntyre attends [story]
OLPH
Are you worried about getting diabetes? Have you been told that you have pre-diabetes? One out of three American adults has prediabetes.
Aug. 16: Henry Mayo Hosts Diabetes Prevention Program
Avian influenza refers to a family of influenza or flu viruses that commonly infect birds.
L.A. County Public Health Urges Public to Protect Pet Birds from Bird Flu
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed 19 new deaths throughout L.A. County, 3,995 new cases countywide and 112 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley.
Friday COVID Roundup: County Moves to Medium Community Level
Marvel Comics’ best-known, tree-like sentient being, Groot, a character that became widely popular through the action comedy "Guardians of the Galaxy," gets his own animated show on Disney+ this week.
CalArts Alum Kirsten Lepore Brings ‘I am Groot’ to Disney+
Work along the I-5 corridor in Burbank continues and will include nighttime lane reductions and the closing of the Verdugo Avenue off-ramp during the week of Aug. 15 to Aug. 18.
I-5 Corridor Improvements Include Nighttime Lane Reductions
As part of his legislative package calling on accountability, transparency, and integrity in the state government's procurement process, Senator Scott Wilk, R-Santa Clarita, announced Senate Bill 1271 (SB 1271) passed out of the Assembly Appropriations Committee on Aug. 11.
Wilk’s Measure Increasing Transparency Passes Assembly Committee
The early portion of The Master's University women's soccer team's schedule in 2022 will have a national tournament-type feel.
TMU Women’s Soccer To Play Top Teams on Florida, Indiana Trips
Princess Cruises today announced updated COVID-19 protocols and guidelines, removing the vaccine requirement for most voyages of less than 16 days so that anyone can cruise and adjusting pre-travel testing requirements to make it less complicated.
Princess Cruises Removes Vaccine Requirement for Most Sailings
As the summer travel season wraps up, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department reminds drivers to be responsible and never drive under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs.
Aug. 17-Sept. 5: LASD Will Increase End-of-Summer DUI Patrols, Checkpoints
Historically, California has been the most wildfire prone state in the United States. In 2021, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, reported over 4,000 fires that burned 60,507 acres across the state.
Ken Striplin | Keep Your Family, Home and Property Safe from Wildfires
The county of Los Angeles Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission is hosting a Special Hearing on Deputy Gangs in the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Aug: 19 Special Hearing on L.A. County Sheriff’s Deputy Gangs
1944 - Newhall Refinery on Sierra Highway destroyed by fire (then rebuilt) [watch film]
Newsreel
As local students get ready to head back to class for the new school year, your Salvation Army Santa Clarita Corps wants to ensure they have the supplies and resources necessary for success.
Salvation Army Santa Clarita Hosting Back-to-School Drive
The Rancho Camulos National Historic Landmark Presents: "Sundays at the Landmark" on Sunday, Aug. 28, with Dave Berg. He will present "Stories to Share.
Aug. 28: Author Dave Berg Presents ‘Stories to Share’ at Rancho Camulos
The WiSH Education Foundation's much-anticipated Cocktails on the Roof event is back for the community to enjoy on Saturday, Nov. 19, from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Subaru of Valencia campus.
Nov. 19: Cocktails on the Roof Returns with ‘Share the Love’ Event
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station is reminding residents that no one will ever call your home demanding payment for "outstanding warrants."
SCV Sheriff’s Station Warning Residents of Scam Calls
Carousel Ranch, in Agua Dulce, was presented with a $5,000 donation from the Logix Federal Credit Union Community Stars Foundation.
Logix Foundation Donates $5K to Carousel Ranch
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health confirmed Thursday no additional deaths and 107 new cases in the Santa Clarita Valley, with a total of 15 new deaths and 4,345 new cases countywide.
Thursday COVID Roundup: 107 New SCV Cases; No Additional Deaths
SCVNews.com
%d bloggers like this: