Fix-A-Home Project

We continue our service to Country through service to our community and our veterans. We are ever watchful for opportunities to make a difference in Chapel Hill and our county. This program, Greater Chapel Hill Association of Realtor’s Fix-a-Home project, is just one of them.

The house repair project for Jack W. Neville is now complete. Jack and his wife endured repair work for several weeks and then moved out of their house for the final interior work. On Friday, October 19th, 2012, they arrived home for the unveiling and acceptance. It wasn’t a “MOVE THAT BUS!” event, but it was exciting. It brought the veterans and community together to help a veteran in need. Here is Jack’s story.

In early 2012, Past Post Commander Lee Heavlin was asked by a local volunteer group to assist in the funding and restoration of a veteran’s home. The Greater Chapel Hill Board of Realtors members sponsor a home repair project each year. They call it their Fix-a-Home Project. This year they wanted to assist a veteran and asked for help in making it happen.

Local veterans were asked to fund and assist with the restoration. The our post participated as an organizer and in the location of a candidate. One of our newer members, a Korean War Veteran, was known to have a house in dire need of repair and he was nominated. Our candidate, Jack W. Neville, was selected from a group of five candidates.

After his home was accepted as a project, they learned that his roof was beyond repair. They needed a new roof. Heavlin visited local businesses and he was able to get strong support from Mac Fitch of Fitch Lumber Co. in Carrboro. Fitch funded the underlayment, roof ridge and vent caps. He also provided lumber and other materials for the interior.

Veterans of Foreign Wars C. V. Cummings Chapel Hill Post 9100 was approached for financial assistance. The Post provided $500 for materials from their Veterans Relief Fund and then passed the hat at that meeting to raise another $220. This effort paid for roofing materials.

With the funding from the VFW, Commander Heavlin returned to Fitch Lumber to solicit their help and support of their CertainTeed supplier. Mac Fitch worked with his supplier and the post was able to get a 30-year shingle at a steep special discount. The supplier provided 12 squares of shingles for the house that cost one-third of retail. That was a critical part of the project as a roof was needed before any other work could be done.

Local realtors and volunteers repaired the interior and exterior of the house. They donated thousands of dollars in labor as contractors, roofers, plumbers and other journeymen. Others donated furniture, fixtures and other project essentials. The local realtors paid for the repairs and materials needed for the exterior, interior and yard work.

We are proud to have played a part in the selection of a home.  It was an honor to assist in organizing funding and benefactors for this project. Our efforts were key to a successful event. Bill Munsee, a retired U.S. Navy Captain and project manager of the Fix-a-Home project, was most appreciative of the efforts of the Veterans of Foreign Wars for funding the roof and organizing all of the participants and donors.

What about you? Are you a veteran looking for a challenge and an opportunity to serve others? Why not join our Post and join us in our quest to help and serve others. We have a job for you!


I found the name “Capt. Bill Munsee” in your article. I was trying to locate a Bill Munsee who I served with in VP 56 back in the 1970’s. We were roomies on a Sigonella deployment and were on a Keflavic deployment also. He was 3-p on my crew and I was navcom. His wife was Jo Ellen and an excellent cook with a pressure cooker. Last time I found him he was (if memory serves) Compatwingspac out in California though I am not sure of his title now. If this is him I would love to hear from him just to renew old friendship. THANX!!!
Terry D. Long LCDR USN (ret.)
700 Allied Rd., Sulphur La. 70663
337 527-6992 or cell 337 499-7712

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