Friends, family give back to disabled vet who was surrogate father

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by Karma Dickerson

WHAS11.com

Posted on July 13, 2014 at 7:24 PM

Updated Sunday, Jul 13 at 9:53 PM

SELLERSBURG, Ind. (WHAS11)-- An air force veteran and his wife touched a generation of local young people by opening their home to anyone in the neighborhood acting as surrogate parents.

Now that veteran is disabled and he and his wife have trouble taking care of their home. Now those young people and adults are returning the favor. 
 
Dozens of helping hands working to break down, clean out, and build up a home that belongs to none of them, but holds a special place in the hearts of many of them
 
 “They really were the go to spot for a lot of kids,” Ashley Donef, a childhood friend of the family, said.
 
When Rick Frazier III posted to Facebook saying he was trying to get his parent's house ready to sell and anyone who could lend a hand was welcome the response was overwhelming. It turns out the Frazier’s are parental figures to more than just their own kids.
 
“Growing up they always took care of everyone on the neighborhood,” Rick Frazier III, the couple’s son, said.
 
For decades Rick and Judy Frazier have welcomed the kids of the neighborhood into this yard hosting everything from football games to graduation parties. This weekend isn't the first time the backyard is getting a makeover.
 
“[That] mound out there were horse shoe pits where, the kids and all of us would pitch horseshoes,” Fraizer Jr. said.
 
But it is the first one the Air Force veteran hasn't been able to do it himself.
 
“I've been retired now for two and a half. I worked though it for as long as I could,” Rick Frazier Jr. said.
 
Frazier suffers from a spinal degeneration condition that makes moving around difficult. Some days he struggles to get out of bed, let alone take care of his nearly one acre of land. 
 
So he and his wife decided it’s time to downsize, but the house was in no condition to sell and they were in no condition to get it ready themselves.
 
In just two days the volunteers, some who haven't seen the Fraziers since they were playing football in the back yard as kids, have pulled down the old deck and are well on the way to finishing the new one. Plus they cleaned out the shed and basement of all types of stuff a family accumulates over the course of 30 years.
 
A home that means so much to many, the family said they'll be sad to see it go. Though who knows it may not be going far.
 
“I want to see what they're selling it for... might be interested in it,” Tim McCubibns, a volunteer and family friend, said. 
 
Dozens donating time, money, with no other motive than saying thank you to a surrogate mother and father.
 
“That's love, action," Frazier Jr. said. "You can always say that you love, but love is action." 
 
What are you doing to help improve your community? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter by using #DoSomething. You can also send an email to dosomething@whas11.com.
 

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