March 17, 2021

Tim & Kris Burkey

Tim & Kris Burkey – our 2021 recipients. Tim was diagnosed with ALS August of 2020

Before & After for bathroom – removal of cast iron claw foot tub – install shower
Before & After Kitchen renovation

PayItForward spent the week of March 8th – 12th giving back to a family in our community. This year marked our 8th project and there is never too much I feel we can do when it comes to helping the families we choose. We chose Tim & Kris Burkey for our project because Tim was diagnosed with ALS in August of 2020 & his decline has quickly limited his abilities in the house. One of the many issues in the home was the small bathroom which had a clawfoot tub, and the swing of the bathroom door with the 6×7 bathroom didn’t even give him the freedom to enter the bathroom on his own, walker or wheelchair. I feel we gave him back the ability to have those freedoms so many of us take for granted.

A list of the renovations that took place in the home follows:

Gutted bathroom & removing closet & storage which added 3 feet of width to the bathroom. Installed shower only, grab bars, hand shower, ADA toilet with bidet seat, new vanity & faucet, towel warmer, new flooring and lots of little details.

Gutted kitchen & replaced all cabinets & installed new granite tops, sink & touch free, voice activated faucet.

Removed a dining island that was in-between kitchen/living room so that we could put in place the new dining table & chairs we purchased, I felt it so important for Tim to be able to sit with his family while they eat & spend time at that table.

We added all new light fixtures dining, living, kitchen, hallway, bedrooms & upstairs. We added outlets to many areas, as this 1921 home did not have them. We repaired any electrical issues and added smoke detectors throughout the house.

We installed a new furnace & air conditioner to ease the burden of expense for future replacement, the furnace had been giving them issues this past winter.

We installed a new power vent water heater for better efficiency & a water softener. A water softener is so important for anyone whom is bound to wheelchair to help protect their skin.

The basement was thoroughly cleaned & many shelves were added as it was organized & sorted for ease & helped created a clearer space.

New flooring was also added from kitchen all the way through living room, this flooring will be much better suited for wheelchair use so Tim can get around the house without restrictions.

New gutters we added to home, the garage door opener fixed & other yard clean up was done for them. We also had all the windows cleaned inside & outside of home. The ducts were all cleaned in the home, a last minute thought that was also donated by the company that did them!

One of the many special pieces I purchased for the family was a commissioned oil painting. In December of 2015 the family lost their son to a heroin overdose & that loss has been devastating. Last fall they had a new family picture taken, which was a first for them since losing Tyler, so I had that painted adding him into the picture. I felt he should be a part of what we did & wanted the family to know that love never leaves.

The work I put into the projects every year is endless, tireless & never gets old. I have many long nights planning out the project, buying items, raising money & reaching out to any & all volunteers we need to get this done. I feel I am so blessed to be part of such an amazing & caring community that knows the meaning & love that goes into what we are doing. I am not a government aide program, I find that important to share – I am a community aide program!! The people we help do not qualify for government aide due to the employment the maintain & the assets they may have but they still need this help & the work that needs to be done is just too costly to take on.

“Healing Hearts One Home at a Time” – I feel we have accomplished this once again. I know caring for Tim & his ability to care for himself will be much easier with what we’ve done.

There are many other photos of the project that I can share & will do so periodically!

I want to thank so many of you for your help in accomplishing this undertaking! It could not be done without you! Wagner Construction, Fox Electric, Accentra Credit Union, Holiday Inn of Austin, Home Federal, Freeborn Mower Round Up, Med City Installation, Lindsay Bires American Family, Border States Electric, Felton Plumbing, Delta Faucet Company,, Advantage Heating & Cooling, ServPro of Austin & Albert Lea, Goodin Company, Endres Window Cleaning, Converse Candids, Weis Landscaping, Sellers Lock & Key, Johnstone Supply The Bloomington Group, Muzik’s Muddin’, D&G Ace Hardware, Old 218, CCI Granite, Kruckeberg Services, McKay Bros Seamless Gutters, Aren Crews, Eric Thompson, Ducts R Us. I also want to thank those that provided meals for the crew – Julie Thomsen, Arby’s of Austin, Piggy Blues BBQ and Ben Vondahl from Goodin.

And who says we can’t lighten the mood a bit – ha ha! Rub – a – dub – dub!