Struggling homeowner gets Thanksgiving surprise

Builders Care & Roof Smart come through for 78 year-old woman

CREATED Nov 26, 2013

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 CAPE CORAL, Fla. -  Chanting the words "Builders Care, Roof Smart," a group of smiling people marched right down Alabar Lane to the home of 78 year-old Joan Annunzio

"Surprise!" they yelled when they got to her front porch.
 
"Hi," she said with a shy smile.
 
The group's spokeswoman, Heidi Taulman explained they were there to give Joan good news: the leaking roof that's been worrying her for years will finally be fixed.
 
"It leaks in various place and tiles are blowing off of it," said Joan.
 
The group said a prayer as Joan was presented with flowers.
 
"Lord, you are a God of new beginnings," someone whispers.
 
"Make this a new beginning for Joan and the Annunzio family."
 
"She's not going to worry about anything any longer," said Peter Simeone who co-owns Roof Smart with John Gillam.
 
The company is installing a $6500 roof for free on Annunzio's home. She's lived in it for 28 years.
 
"I'm just overwhelmed with Thanksgiving, just overwhelmed," Joan said as she teared up.
 
Joan couldn't afford to have the roof replaced or even repaired.
 
She raised her son in the house and always put him first.
 
Despite some serious health problems - including a heart condition and failing eyesight - she often walks 2 miles to the store to pick up things for her neighbors. 
 
"Joan worked hard all of her life, taking care of friends whenever she can," said Taulman of Builders Care.
 
Now it's time for someone else to take care of Joan.
 
"I'm just overwhelmed and feelingn appreciation," said Joan.
 
"Thank you from bottom of my heart which is pounding," she said with a laugh to the group. 
 
The co-owner of Roof Smart said it's just as gratifying for his crew as it is for Joan.
 
"This is what the holidays are about about," says Simeone.
 
"Giving to someobdy who needed something."
 
"You reach out and help out," he said.
 
 "We should be more thankful to her than her to us," he added.
 
Simeone says his company is thankful to have met with a lot of success over the years and wants to pay it forward.
 
"We've been so blessed the community has taken care of us." he said.
 
"Now we can take care of people need to be taken care of."
 
True to form, Joan's thoughts quickly shifted others who are getting ready to celebrate the holiday as she wished that, "everyone could be as thankful as I am right now and that we have a happy Thanksgiving day."
 
Hers will most definitely be a thankful - and dry holiday. The leaky roof should be completely replaced just in time for Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday.
 
"Thank you so much," she told the group again,
 
"And may we all have a all happy Thanksigving in a world in peace,"