Team Rubicon volunteers renovate hurricane-damaged residence

Marlisa Harding

Susan Stewart returned to a fully renovated home on Thursday thanks to volunteers from Team Rubicon. The veteran-led disaster response team completely restored her hurricane damaged home including gutting, HVAC, plumbing, electrical, flooring, roof and windows restoration.  

Stewart’s first words upon walking into the four-generation family home were, “Oh my God, my kitchen. A new sink too? This is unreal. I’ve never really had nothing on my own.” 

Stewart has lived in the home since the 1970’s along with her grandmother, parents and her own children. “This just means everything to me,” she said.  

“This where I want to be. But for me to be here I had to have it fixed.” 

Hurricane Delta wreaked the most damage to the Lake Charles property. “My house was shuffled during Laura, but rain came in during Delta and fell through the cracks.” 

She came upon Team Rubicon when they were cutting trees down in the neighborhood. Volunteers signed her up for gutting and mold treatment which she initially thought were their only services.  

“I thought maybe they could take the mold out and then work around the other stuff. But they did that and fixed it a whole lot better!” 

She’s lived in the area with a kind friend since the home was initially damaged but returning home has always been her number one priority. “I just like being here,” she said pointing to the property and neighborhood.  

“I’m the last one of the pack that’s left here. It’s not many of us left that were here back in ‘76.” 

Returning home also has somber significance for Stewart as her son was tragically killed outside of the home in 2019. “I guess I’ll always be a mother first. With him dying all of a sudden and you have nobody in the house? I’m just glad I moved back.” 

Her eyes filled with tears when she was able to enter his remodeled bedroom. “This is going to be my praying room now. Thank ya’ll so much. It just means everything.”

””

Susan Stewart waits for Team Rubicon volunteers to arrive to give her a grand tour of her refurbished Church Street house Thursday afternoon.

Donna Price

Local News

First legislative session was mixed bag for Landry

Local News

Cassidy among leaders marking D-Day anniversary in France

Crime

6/4: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list

Local News

New Orleans plans to spiff up as host of next year’s Super Bowl

Jim Beam

Jim Beam column:Disappointing session is over

Crime

State Police investigating officer-involved shooting on I-10

Local News

Rousse: Expect more specialized degrees at McNeese, fewer general studies offerings

Local News

McNeese Rodeo Team going to the College National Finals Rodeo 

life

Lake Area Beekeepers Club to present program at the Sulphur Library

life

VIDEO: Dinosaurs take over Central Library

Local News

Cassidy: Insurance crisis hurting Louisiana families

Crime

Arrest made in LaGrange Street shooting

Crime

6/4: Calcasieu Parish Sheriff announces arrest list

Crime

President Biden’s brother, son’s widow among witnesses expected at Hunter Biden’s federal gun trial

Crime

Iowa man gets 10-year sentence for sexual battery, domestic abuse

Local News

Yet another round of thunderstorms expected this afternoon

life

Westlake Recreation Center renamed after local ‘icon’

Local News

‘This close’ but Tigers can’t hold on, season ends

LSU Sports

‘This close,’ but Tigers come home empty

life

United Way empowering the youth of SW La. with Summer of Service initiative

Local News

Lawmakers approve surgical castration of child sex offenders

life

PHOTO GALLERY: Free junior golf clinic

Crime

Crimes against nature conviction, sentence will stand

Local News

Sexually transmitted disease rates a cause for concern in La.