Volunteers with ‘Rebuilding Together Atlanta’ help fix Smyrna veteran’s home

20 Lockheed Martin employees volunteered their time to help
Crumbling houses owned by war veterans are being brought back to life in Smyrna.
Published: Mar. 31, 2023 at 4:26 PM EDT
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SMYRNA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Crumbling houses owned by war veterans are being brought back to life in Smyrna.

Ken Khristian is a disabled veteran who has lived along Hampton Circle for more than 20 years. The work by a group of volunteers on Friday will enable him to live in his house for many more years.

“Everything that they’re doing, it’s just all about making me comfortable in my own house. I’m so grateful and thankful for it,” said Khristian.

Dozens of volunteers from Lockheed Martin spent Friday afternoon laying new flooring, building a new entrance ramp, and installing a garden in the backyard. Khristian served in Operation Desert Storm back in the 1990′s, then spent years in the Postal Service. He isn’t used to asking for help, but about two months something told him to reach out.

“Don’t be afraid. That’s it right there because for a long time, I drove right past the City Hall in Smyrna in my mind always told me to stop and ask.”

A Smyrna City Hall employee connected Khristian with Rebuilding Together Atlanta. The non-profit works with companies like Lockheed to fix up the homes of the elderly, disabled and veterans. Khristian. who suffered a stroke two years ago, is a perfect fit for a project like this.

“His whole life has been about public service. Here’s our opportunity to give thanks to him for his extraordinary service in his hour of need,” said Nichelle Mitchem, executive director of Rebuilding Together Atlanta.

Volunteers made about $15,000 in repairs and modifications with all the materials and time being donated at no cost to Khristian.

“We’re helping only this one individual, but it impacts the community as a whole,” said Mitchem.

If you need help or you’d like to volunteer you can visit Rebuilding Together’s website.