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Huge crowd on hand for veteran’s return home

By Kay S. Pedrotti Thanks to hundreds of donors, sponsors, workers and businesses, 75-year-old U.S. Army veteran John Greene is now living in the home he was born in ‘“ but it’s been completely renovated. Last week at 111 11th Street, American Legion Post 516 of McDonough welcomed a large crowd, thanking everyone involved and then some. The post initiated the effort to fix the ‘uninhabitable’ house last June, said Eddie Felton, post 516 member and emcee. They had $1,300 ‘to start with,’ he said, but the donations quickly grew; total cost of the extensive renovation was $32,000. Felton said work was first done on weekends and then ‘six or seven days a week,’ with many contributions of time and materials from sources such as Bankston Lumber and Home Depot. The Home Depot Foundation awarded a $24,999 grant for the project, according to Christine Smith. Post Commander Alton Head commended the post members and Patriot Riders for contributions of time and supplies: ‘These guys don’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk. They respond to many needs.’ State representatives Johnnie Caldwell and Brian Strickland, Barnesville Police Chief Craig Cooper, Maj. Leslie Holmes and Capt. David Knight of the Lamar County Sheriff’s Office, Lamar County commissioners, Henry County commissioners and a host of notables and friends attended. A proclamation from the City of Barnesville commending Post 516 for rescuing Greene’s house was read. When asked if he was ‘overwhelmed’ by what had been done for him, Greene said, ‘I sure am. I sure am.’

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