Last fall Rick Tijerina, 65, from Cheshire was waiting for haircut at his barber in Junction City when an article caught his eye. Habitat for Humanity was offering a free new roof to veterans in the area.
After he got his trim,Tijerina walked a few blocks to the Junction City Habitat office and became the first Lane County applicant for the Roof Deployment Project. Since 2016, more than 190 military members have received new roofs through the partnership between roofing company Owens Corning, their Platinum Preferred Contractors and Habitat for Humanity.
Tuesday morning a crew from River Roofing in Eugene arrived to tear off the 23-year-old roof on the home Tijerina shares with his wife, Liezel Tijerina, in Cheshire. If everything goes well they will have a new roof by the end of the week.
Originally from California, Tijerina served four years in the U.S. Navy in the 1970s as a weather observer for Navy flight operations in Southern California. He moved to Oregon in 1984. He bought the house in Cheshire in 1997.
River Roofing owners John Davey and his brother Steve Davey have been providing one free roof locally through another program called The Good Neighbor Project for several years, so when they got a call from Owens Corning asking if they would help with the Roof Deployment Project, they said yes.
Owens Corning provides the shingles free of charge and River Roofing donates the labor.
“We have been installing roofs since 1976. This is a way for us to give back to the community and the veterans who have served our country,” said John Davey.
The help is welcome. “This desperately needed to be done and this is the best option I had to get it done,” said Tijerina as he watched the crew climb onto his roof to begin work. “I would like to express my thanks and how grateful I am,” he added.
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