Lawton-Ft. Sill Habitat builds its first handicapped accessible home

Lawton_Volunteers for Lawton-Fort Sill's Habitat for Humanity are working from sun up until sundown to build a new home in only five days.  The group has completed building the frame, and on Monday the walls went up.  Hundreds of people make up the volunteer crew, toiling under the hot sun to build a new house for one very lucky family.  "We believe that when you believe in people, and help people, it always comes back," said Reverend Dr. Keith Miles.  "It's that what goes around comes around kind of thing."

Carmen Colbert is the lucky woman who will call the new house "home."  She says the home is the light at the end of the tunnel for she and her son.  "It's a miracle, to me, getting this house," she said.  For the past seventeen years, Colbert says she has cared for her handicapped son who was born with cerebal palsy, and is severely disabled.  She says she has to carry her 130-pound son in and out of bed, to and from the bathroom, and in and out of the bathtub - not to mention maneuver her son and his 30 pound wheelchair through narrow halls and doorways.

Colbert says there isn't a day that goes by when she isn't afraid she'll drop him, or injure herself.  With all that she goes through, her friends and family want her to put her son in a special home, but she says that isn't an option.  "I couldn't do it," she said.  "I said, 'I don't care if we both fall on the floor, he ain't going nowhere.  I already buried two children, Anthony is staying at home.'"

Eleven years ago, Colbert lost her daughter in a house fire, and three years ago, her oldest son died in an accident.  She says her eldest son was the person who helped her carry her youngest throughout the house.  Always thinking positively, Carmen says she knows her children were taken early to become angels who would put in a good word for her to God, and allow her to get this home.

Colbert's new home is the first built by the Lawton Habitat for Humanity chapter that will be handicapped accessible.  "Having enough room to get around the house, there's no value that can be placed on that," said volunteer Mike Ferguson.  The home will be equipped with a ceiling track system and lift that will carry Colbert's son throughout the house.  She says the community have given her and her son a new home, but also a new life.

Count on 7News to bring you updates as progress on the home continues this week.