Habitat for Humanity Director of Volunteers Leo Campeau shows off a personalize t shirt at the Habitat for Humanity Home for the Holiday ribbon cutting ceremony Saturday in Vernon. Leo says he started off as a volunteer and now the kids call him Grandpa. (Lisa Mazurek/Vernon Morning Star)

Habitat home full of heart

Three Vernon families get a roof over their heads just in time for Christmas

Three local families finally have a place to call home for the holidays.

And they’ve also gained some great friends in the process.

The Habitat for Humanity Vernon triplex was officially opened Saturday with the families, partners and volunteers who all literally poured their time, heart and sweat into building the home.

“This is just a piece of our affordable housing puzzle, but every one that we build is building steps to make sure that everybody has a safe place to call home,” said Vernon city Coun. Juliette Cunningham.

While the families took part in building their home, one especially dedicated invididual is volunteer Leo Campeau – working up to six and seven days a week, eight and nine hours a day to put a roof over children’s heads.

“Every time he would look at these children he would know exactly why he was here,” said Glory Westwell, Vernon Habitat for Humanity chair.

In fact, Campeau was so involved that he has become family to the very families who he has helped.

“I started out with nine grandchildren of my own, now I have 16,” he said.

It’s people like Campeau, who pour their heart and soul into helping others, that bring tears to the eyes of officials during event such as Saturday’s ribbon cutting.

“I have lived here since 1966 and I do believe that this is one of the best communities,” said Cunningham.

Mayor Akbal Mund wholeheartedly agrees.

“Theres lots of great causes in our community,” said Mayor Akbal Mund. “The community steps up here in Vernon, they always have, always will.

“It does take a lot of work but I know it comes from the heart and a lot of passion.”


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Eight-year-olds Isabella Columbus and Lydia Sales cut the ribbon on their families’ new Habitat for Humanity Homes during a Home for the Hoildays ceremony Saturday. (Lisa Mazurek/Vernon Morning Star)

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