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Habitat recipient "pays it forward" | Community Spirit

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Habitat recipient "pays it forward"
Habitat recipient "pays it forward"

by Chelsea LaForge

It started when a speck of shingle stone landed in Michael Bradley's eye. Bradley was volunteering as one of Union High School's Habitat builders. While Bill Moerdyk, a Kent County's Habitat for Humanity staff, flushed out Bradley's eye, he made conversation with a few questions for the student. When Bradley talked about where he lives, Moerdyk recognized the street name. Before long it became clear that Michael Bradley was living in a Habitat house. "Yeah, you built my house," he revealed. Moerdyk remembers the mixed emotions well. "Here the poor guy has his head in his hands because of the stone in his eye, and I’m rejoicing."

The Bradley House

Vernell Bradley, Michael Bradley's mother, remembers when her family's house was being built and recalls "Michael was always interested in building houses. He was so excited when our home was being built and always tried to sneak on the site to help the builders with our home." To her son, it is a fond memory as well, even though he was only ten years old when his Habitat house was being built. "I felt happy. I tried [to help] but I was too young," said Michael Bradley.

Moerdyk reflects back on building the Bradley's home and remembers Vernell Bradley's enthusiasm during the experience. "Vernell, a real friendly, happy kind of person. It was a fun time working for her. Every Habitat...