EL PASO, Texas (CBS4) — For the last four months, Habitat for Humanity has been working on construction of a house in Horizon. Today, Christopher Lloyd can call that house his home. Lloyd served two tours of duty in Afghanistan and suffered injuries resulting in permanent disabilities.
“We might have four limbs, but sometimes our disabilities are hidden, so I have had a lot of struggles and ups and downs from the military,” Lloyd said.
Lloyd calls El Paso home. “El Paso is my forever home. It’s the greatest city in the United States,” Lloyd said. And today, the meaning of home means a little bit more to him.
“This is a dream for me. I came from 300-square-foot apartment to a brand-new built house built on the back of nothing but volunteers and donations through our society here in El Paso,” Lloyd said.
This project was put together by Habitat for Humanity and built on the backs of nothing but volunteers and donations. They have been working on this house in Horizon for over four months.
“This is the first time I have seen such a community involvement. I have seen so many people willing to donate time and money and materials and labor, and we had so many groups of volunteers that we couldn’t have everyone who asked to volunteer,” Dave Driscoll, executive director of Habitat for Humanity.
“We had an individual donor that wanted to donate the money for the cost of this house, and he said the only stipulation was he wanted (the recipient) to be a combat vet. He had an aunt and uncle that were here in El Paso, and the uncle was involved with military, the aunt was involved with Habitat and he said, 'I want to donate a house for a combat vet.' We looked for a combat vet, and that's how we found Chris,” Driscoll said.
Lloyd says he and his service dog, Daisy, are excited to decorate the house and make it their own. “Everything is brand spanking new. This is going to be the master, and the greatest thing is when this is all done, you will have a great view of the outside, of the trees and grass, and that will be amazing. Being away from New England, I wanted one room to remind me of coastal Connecticut, (and we did that with the bathroom). To come home and sit outside and realize I have the dream of homeownership itself, that's more than I can take in.”
“It’s an emotional thing for me individually because I have worked with Chris for the last four months for this house, and we have worked every weekend, and I have gotten know Chris, and he is so humble and is so appreciative for what he gets. His whole attitude was, 'What more can I do?' And that to me is what Habitat wants to put people in homes who have those characteristics and values,” Driscoll said.
Lloyd said he is excited for warmer temperatures so he can add more to his new home.
“This whole area in the backyard will be grass, and another area will be all trees,” Lloyd said.
He says there are no other words than thank you and that he is forever grateful for the people in our city.
“It reenergizes my love for El Paso. I have always loved it here, but this actually shows and proves this community really do care about the veterans. The impact it has on me, it shows the veterans are well taken care of in El Paso, and I’m proud to call this my home.”
Driscoll said Habitat for Humanity generally builds once house a year but this year, it is seeking funding to potentially build two new homes.