PILOT MOUNTAIN — Dark clouds over the Hodges family Habitat for Humanity home dedication Sunday gave way to bright sunshine after the key to the house was presented the Hodges family.
They now face what is a difficult and exciting time a total of 40 local habitat families have faced — they have to wait several weeks before the closing so they can move in.
Greater Mount Airy Habitat for Humanity Executive Director Lynn Wilkes opened the ceremony by recognizing Pilot Mountain Commissioners Cordie Armstrong and Dwight Atkins as well as Mayor Pro Tem Linda Needham who welcomed the Hodges to the community.
The home was constructed for Sharon and Darin Hodges and their family which has grown with the addition of three grandchildren, Brooklyn, Abigail and Colin. The couple said they are living in a 17-year old mobile home that houses the family of eight. Both said their home has seen better days and look forward to the comfort of the Habitat home they helped build.
“Our three grandchildren are really the reason we are doing this,” said Sharon Hodges in an earlier interview where she pointed out they celebrated their 21st anniversary working on the new home. While Sharon Hodges had no construction experience before the Habitat build, Darin said he had gotten some experience from his father and mother’s business, Hiatt’s Home Improvement.
True Vine Baptist Church Pastor Rawley Haynes Jr. read from Psalm 127 before the presentation of keys and a gift Bible. He called all assembled to hold tight to their faith and remember that unless God builds the house “they labour in vain that build it.” He also quoted from passages in the Psalm which states children are a heritage of the Lord. Construction Manager Greg Russo presented the keys to the family.
“My greatest fear is speaking in front of a large group of people,” said Darin Hodges. “A lot of people are responsible for us being here. People from several states and they helped out of the goodness of their hearts. This was all about people helping people with no personal reward. You see the good side of humanity through this project. There are no words to properly say thank you the way I’d like too. There’s a little bit of all of you in this home and from the bottom of our hearts we thank you.”
Sharon Hodges said she was just glad to have the build finished because working, taking care of the grandchildren and working with Habitat had left her exhausted.
A reception and tour of the home followed a closing prayer given by Habitat Board of Directors member David Hayes.
“We hope to build two more homes in the near future,” said Wilkes. “We already have families for the next two which will be built in this subdivision. We will first concentrate on our home for the Clark family which was part of a cooperative project with Surry Community College and North Surry High School. This home is coming along very quickly so we anticipate starting the next two this summer.”
Wilkes said Habitat would not be as successful as it is without continued community, individual and business support. She said the group is always interested in individuals, groups and organizations to help them build clean, decent, affordable housing for deserving families. She said she was proud of the group seeing generations of volunteers continuing the tradition of volunteering Habitat relies on.
She stressed that Habitat families are required to pay off a 25-30 year zero interest mortgage and are required to work more than 250 hours on their and another families’ home construction.
Reach David Broyles at email@example.com or 719-1952.