Volunteers help renovate veteran's home in Hazel Park

Volunteers help woman struggling to maintain her home

By Priya Mann - Reporter , Troy Blevins - Online Editor

HAZEL PARK, Mich. - Volunteers in metro Detroit decided to do more than thank a veteran Saturday. They got their hands dirty helping a woman struggling to maintain her home.

"We're going to do some yard work, putting down mulch, getting my hands dirty," said Matt Petty, of the Sears Heroes at Home program.

"We are so excited to help Dianne," said Halie Black, of Rebuilding Together Oakland County.

Rebuilding Together and Sears Heroes at Home volunteers spent the day helping a 71-year-old veteran in Hazel Park.

"It means a lot to me," Dianne Hendrickson said. "Lots of stuff I couldn't get done without them."

As soon as Hendrickson finished high school, she enlisted. But during the Vietnam War, women couldn't fight. So she became a finance clerk stationed at Fort Knox.

Surprisingly, she doesn't feel like she helped pave the way for future female recruits.

"To me, being a trailblazer would be like Rosie the Riveter, back in the day, when it wasn't cool for anybody to do that," Hendrickson said.

The volunteers wanted to help this humble veteran. Rebuilding Together is a local nonprofit assisting low-income homeowners. Sears provides the materials.

"We're thankful for her service, everything she's done for our country and thank her for that," Black said.

"Do you consider yourself a hero?" Local 4 News' Priya Mann asked.
"No," Hendrickson said. "I just do what I do."

"That's what heroes usually say, but to all of us that's what they are," Petty said.

Contractors will be here in the next few weeks working on the stairs, deck, kitchen and bathroom. That work is expected to be completed by the end of June.

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