On Veterans Day, November 11, the Christian housing ministry Habitat for Humanity will celebrate the construction of its 4,000th home built in Tennessee with a dedication ceremony featuring country music star Lee Greenwood.
The house, built by host affiliate Habitat for Humanity of Williamson and Maury Counties in Franklin, TN, will be sold at cost with a zero-interest mortgage to Harold Allen, a local Vietnam veteran.
Lee Greenwood, the National Ambassador of HelpingaHero.org, will be joining the event to sing God Bless the USA.
The dedication will begin at 1:00p.m. at 112 Bradford Dr. Franklin, TN; a reception will follow at Walker Baptist Church, 1350 West Main Street in Franklin.
Allen is a native of Franklin and graduated with the last segregated senior class from Natchez High School, now known as Franklin High. Allen was raised by his grandmother along with his three sisters and brother. Neither his parents, nor his grandparents were homeowners. However, Allen has always held onto the American Dream of homeownership.
Life after active duty has been difficult for Allen. He has two artificial hips, has endured three strokes, and suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder. Nonetheless, he focuses on his blessings and never lets his challenges affect his efforts to give back. Allen and his live-in aide, Toni enjoy helping local charities such as the Nashville Rescue Mission and Bridges, a domestic violence center.
“Celebrating this milestone with Vietnam veteran Harold Allen is truly an honor,” said Colleen Dudley, executive director of Habitat for Humanity of Tennessee, “Mr. Allen will soon have his first mortgage loan to repay, which I know will make him very proud, as it does all who will witness this next accomplishment in his life.”
This milestone marks the combined hard work of Tennessee’s 50 Habitat for Humanity affiliates that serve 62 counties across the State. Each Habitat affiliate is a self-funded, grassroots organization; locally operated by a board of directors from their community.
Tennessee Habitat affiliates build approximately 220 homes a year, ranking Tennessee 4th in the Nation for Habitat new home production. In addition to the 4,000 new homes, Habitat hasrenovated or repaired more than 900 homes and served more than 17,150 children and adults. Tennessee affiliates employ 405 workers and generate more than $55 million in economic activity annually, according to research completed by the University of Tennessee.
Sponsors of the 4000th house build are: Eco-Energy, Capella Healthcare, The National Funeral Directors Association, Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati, Franklin Flower and Gift Gallery, Pepsi Bottling Company, Puckett’s Restaurants, Sony Music, Spectrum Sound, UL, and Tennessee Housing Development Agency.
Harold Allen has been hard at work on the build site and has big plans for his new home. He envisions planting flowers and vegetables in his future garden and spending time with his adult children. He wants it to be a haven of peace and a place where friends and family can share in his joy.