• Mark Canfield and several others volunteer to help build a new, wheelchair-accessible ramp for World War II veteran Cecil O. Postelle.
    Mark Canfield and several others volunteer to help build a new, wheelchair-accessible ramp for World War II veteran Cecil O. Postelle.

Home Depot, veterans come through for World War II vet

    Liberty – Charlyne Kimsey walked into Home Depot in Blue Ridge, Ga., last month and asked a simple question. She wanted to know if there were any special programs to help local U.S. military veterans with home repairs.
    It was a good thing she asked, because that’s all it took to get veterans groups and Home Depot officials to spring into action.
    Kimsey was seeking help for her father, World War II veteran Cecil O. Postelle, who needed a new ramp for his wheelchair.
    Postelle, 91, was having difficulty getting to his car on the rare occasion that he needed to leave his secluded home in the western part of Cherokee County.
    Jim Lindenmayer of American Legion Post 45 in Canton, Ga., has been involved in dozens of these projects. He was glad to take on another even two hours away.
    “Here you have a World War II veteran who is basically homebound, doesn’t get out much,” Lindenmayer said. “But here we have veterans from four groups coming in to build this thing. They walk away, and he doesn’t pay a thing.”
    Lindenmayer said it was a true community project, with organizations coming together to support Home Depot’s project team – along with high school students scheduled to come out and stain the new ramp in a few months.
    The other organizations helping out included Woodstock (Ga.) American Legion Post 316, Blue Ridge Marine Corps League Detachment No. 1438 and American Legion Post 96 from Cherokee County.
    Stephanie Darsey, the project manager from Home Depot, said a veteran also stepped up and paid for the construction permit.
    “One of our goals at the American Legion is to keep veterans in their houses longer,” Lindenmayer said. “We apply for these grants for those who are honorably discharged, elderly, disabled or financially in need, and we get the project done.”
    Postelle was humbled and grateful for the efforts to help him.
    “These are wonderfully nice people and I appreciate it,” said Postelle, who said he was proud to see veterans sticking together and taking care of each other.
    Darsey added another part to the project when the workers noticed Postelle’s door was not wide enough to be up to code. They replaced his 32-inch door with a 36-inch one leading onto the back porch, where the new ramp connects.
    “Our goal is by 2028 to have done $28 million worth of projects for veterans,” Darsey said.