DENHAM SPRINGS, LA (WAFB) - An elderly woman is counting her blessings. She says a contractor wrecked her home after the August flood. She is finally getting a lift. A local company decided to step in to help flood victims in dire straits.
Julie Kelly's Denham Springs home took on seven feet of water during the flood. "There was slime everywhere, muck everywhere," said Kelly.
She did not have flood insurance, but says she got $30,000 from FEMA. She says volunteers gutted her house and treated it for mold, but she had to pay a contractor to do the rest of the work. She says the man she hired agreed to hang the sheetrock and sand and paint her new walls for $4,000.
"He said he wanted to help me. He said God sent him to help me," said Kelly.
Kelly says she paid him $2,200 to get started, but that he did shoddy work. The sheetrock does not fit properly. There are gaps in the walls throughout her house. Kelly says she has not heard from her contractor since January. "I've exhausted everything. I'm on disability and cannot afford to... I don't have extra money coming in, so I'm just sunk," said Kelly.
When the Owner of Redstick Property Maintenance, Kory Henderson, heard Kelly's story, he said he had to see for himself. "We've got gaps. We've got all of this is just a nightmare," Henderson said.
Henderson says the idea that someone would charge only $4,000 to do this kind of work is a big red flag. "Honestly, it looks like some kids came in here and did this work," said Henderson.
Henderson has agreed repair the house, but he says it will require removing the walls and starting over, a $20,000 job. He says he will cover some of the expenses for Kelly, but does not have the money to do it all. He is holding a fundraiser this weekend in hopes that the community will help him help others who have been blindsided by contractors.
"I feel like they're giving guys who do know what they are doing a bad name. I'm trying to give back to my community and help people out," said Henderson.
It's certainly welcome news to Kelly, who says she had all but given up. The jambalaya fundraiser is Saturday, April 1 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the parking lot next to the Zachary Police Department.
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