Volunteers help 98-year-old World War II vet with home repairs

About 30 Home Depot workers assist

CINCINNATI – Anna Fields, 98, is used to helping others. She was a Women’s Army Corps combat nurse during World War II.

But she was thrilled when 30 volunteers showed up at her house in Bond Hill Thursday to help her.

The Home Depot employees, in cooperation with People Working Cooperatively, came to make repairs and build a wheelchair ramp for Fields. About 90 more workers fanned out to help nine other veterans with home repairs.

Sherry Yaskin was scrubbing down, sanding and repainting the front porch.

Another volunteer was scraping and painting railings, bannisters and ceilings.

"We're going to be building a wheelchair ramp,"  said Grant Galloway, an Army veteran himself.

“She's an amazing lady, and to serve her country … She made the same sacrifices I did and it warms my heart to be able to help her.”

The family had worried about the cost of repairs, but Fields was in shock at all the people who turned out to help.

“This is the thing that’s in my heart: They wanted to do this. They are volunteering their time,” Fields said.

“Oh I can't  … I just … don't let me start to cry … because I just can't believe this.”

The volunteers found the experience just as meaningful.

“Anyone who serves our country, you feel honored to repay the favor and help them out,” Yaskin said. “That absolutely makes it even more worthwhile.”

Fields said it’s the spirit of giving that keeps her going. And she wants others to have that giving, selfless spirit.

“Don’t be downcast that you feel like your country is not thinking anything about you because somebody is, and this is really the proof,” Fields said.

The volunteers - some from as far as Atlanta -  spent hours in the rain Thursday morning making everything possible.

Fields said she was happy to meet so many of her “angels” and she hopes to see them again in two years at her 100th birthday party.

About 120 Home Depot employees made repairs at the homes of 10 elderly veterans on Thursday. It was part of People Working Cooperatively’s Ramp it Up for Veterans Campaign and Home Depot’s Celebration of Service. 

People Working Cooperatively is a Cincinnati-based nonprofit that serves the Tri-State with critical home repairs and modifications to keep low income, elderly and disabled homeowners safely in their own homes.

PWC’s Ramp it Up for Veterans Campaign raises funds and awareness to serve the 400 plus veterans on PWC’s waiting list for services.

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